Mario Chalmers’ love for the game of hoops is what drives him to continue his storied basketball career as he plays for the Zamboanga Valientes in the ASEAN Basketball League Invitational.
In a press conference, the two-time National Basketball Association champion said his passion for the sport keeps him motivated.
The former Miami Heat guard was tapped by Zamboanga last week in the hopes of going far into their regional tournament.
Since then, Chalmers has won two out of his first three games with the Valientes as they tote a 5-6 win-loss record.
“I’ve been around basketball all my life and coming into this year, I wanted to see what type of opportunities I have to go out there and play. It’s just keeping my love for the game and keeping sharing my knowledge with other players of the game,” Chalmers said.
In his debut game, Chalmers scored 19 points, dished off seven assists, grabbed three rebounds and one steal in Zamboanga’s 92-82 win over the Macau Black Bears last 4 February to stop a three-game losing skid.
In his first time playing for the Philippines, Chalmers expressed how it’s all been new to him in his newfound squad but is nonetheless enjoying his stint.
Chalmers was impressed with former Japan B2 League cager Kemark Carino’s skills on the court for Zamboanga.
Apart from Carino, Chalmers is also joined by the likes of former National Collegiate Athletic Association stars James Kwekuteye and John Amores in the squad.
“It’s been great playing with new teammates and learning a new system. It’s been a lot of fun and it’s definitely a real learning experience,” Chalmers said.
“He’s (Carino) really impressed me. I like his game. I like his ability to move without the ball. I definitely look forward to continuing playing with him.”
The 36-year-old veteran knows if the Valientes want to make it into the playoffs, they have to stick together.