Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Top 12 Greatest PBA Heavyweights


  1. Kevin Ramas - Fermin Alberto Ramas, better known as Kevin Ramas is a former PBA player for more than twelve years. He has played for Purefoods Tender Juicy Hotdogs, San Miguel Beermen, Pepsi Mega and Alaska Milkmen. Ramas played for the Mapua Cardinals in the NCAA where he was part of the senior's championship conquest in 1990. Born: October 30, 1967, in Manila, Philippines. College: Mapúa University Intramuros.
  2. Joel Dualan - Joel Dualan is a Filipino former player and coach who previously coaching PCU Dolphins in the NCAA. He is formerly played for Shell Turbo Chargers in the PBA and for Olongapo Volunteers in the MetroBall. He was nicknamed The Refrigerator and El Aparador due to being compared to a cabinet because he’s that big. Born: August 23, 1972, in Quezon City, Philippines. College: University of Manila.
  3. Wilmer Ong - HE wasn't as popular as, say, Bal David or Noli Locsin or Vince Hizon. But to die-hard Ginebra fans, Wilmer Ong best represents the Ginebra players of the Robert Jaworski era because, like the team’s charismatic leader, he never once backed down from battle. Ong was also the quintessential Ginebra bruiser - the last in a long line of Ginebra tough guys that also included Rudy Distrito, Dante Gonzalgo, Sonny Cabatu, Chito Loyzaga, Terry Saldana, the late Rey Cuenco, and, of course, Jaworski himself. It’s his kind that, most Ginebra fans feel, this modern-day Kings obviously lack – Dave Marcelo comes to mind, but he doesn't really come close. Although if you ask these bruisers, they'll tell you they played tough but not rough, physical but not dirty. Born: September 20, 1970, in Cadiz, Negros Occidental, Philippines. College: University of St. La Salle.
  4. Cris Bolado - Bolado played for the National University Bulldogs during his college years. He was selected by Alaska in the second round of the 1994 PBA draft. Listed at 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m), Bolado tied Dong Polistico of the San Miguel Beermen as the second tallest player in the league at that time. He became part of the Alaska Milkmen's 1996 Grand Slam team and in terms of finals stints, Bolado was one of the most successful in the PBA, making it to the championship series for ten straight times - from Alaska, Purefoods, and Gordon's Gin. In 1999, he was in his fourth PBA team with Pop Cola and then was traded to San Miguel Beermen where he became a member of two more championships. Bolado won a total of 11 titles in the league and retired in 2003. Bolado moved to Cambodia with his wife in 2013. There he worked as a basketball coach in an international school in Phnom Penh. He also managed Inasal Nation, a Filipino restaurant. He died in a motorcycle accident on September 17, 2017, at age 47 in Phnom Penh. Born: October 25, 1969, in Lucban, Quezon, Philippines. College: National University.
  5. Ken Bono - Karl Kenneth Odani Bono is a Filipino basketball player who last played for the TNT KaTropa of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).He played collegiate basketball for the Adamson Soaring Falcons in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) from 2003 to 2006 and was named the league's Most Valuable Player in his final season before being selected sixth overall by the Alaska Aces in the 2007 PBA draft. In the Philippine Basketball League (PBL), Bono played for Montaña Pawnshop and Cebuana Lhuillier. In his last conference in the PBL, he was the MVP frontrunner but lost the award to Jayson Castro of Harbour Centre due to lack of media votes. He also played for the Bangkok Cobras in the ASEAN Basketball League. Born: June 19, 1984, in Iloilo City, Philippines. College: Adamson University.
  6. Bonel Balingit - Bonel P. Balingit (born November 30, 1967), also known as The Gentle Giant and Man-Mountain, is a Filipino retired professional basketball player who played as a center. The hulking Bonel played for the University of the Visayas and then joined Magnolia Ice Cream in the PBL. He turn pro in 1992 and was drafted in the second round and 11th overall by the Swift Mighty Meaty Hotdogs in the 1992 PBA draft. Easily one of the most popular cager on the Swift roster who can draw cheers from the fans, Balingit spent all of his first seven PBA seasons with the RFM franchise and was handled by coaches Yeng Guiao, Derrick Pumaren and Norman Black. He was part of the ballclub's four championships from 1992-1995 and won Most Improved Player honors in the 1995 PBA season. Balingit moved to the Metropolitan Basketball Association beginning the 1999 season and played for the San Juan Knights. He returned to the PBA in 2001, playing for Tanduay Rhum Masters and have suited up for Purefoods TJ Hotdogs in his final playing career. Born: November 30, 1967, in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte, Philippines. College: University of the Visayas.
  7. JR Quinahan - Joseph Ronald "J. R." Quiñahan is a Filipino professional basketball player for the NLEX Road Warriors of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA). Dubbed "Baby Shaq" in the Philippine Basketball League where he played for the Granny Goose team because of his physical resemblance to the former Los Angeles Lakers center Shaquille O'Neal. He was drafted in the first round of the 2007 PBA Draft by the Alaska Aces. He was then traded to the Air21 Express before the 2008–2009 season started. He had a short stint with the Talk 'N Text Tropang Texters before finding his way back again to Air21. He played college basketball for the University of the Visayas (UV) Green Lancers, winning the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc. (CESAFI) men's basketball title in each of his 5 years with UV, as well as winning two MVP awards in 2003 and 2004. Born: May 8, 1984, in Cebu City, Philippines. College: University of the Visayas.
  8. Beau Belga - Beau Michael Vincent Esparrago Belga is a Filipino professional basketball player for the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters of the Philippine Basketball Association. He is also an assistant coach for the UST Growling Tigers of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP). He was the seventh overall draft pick by Purefoods in 2008 before being traded to Burger King. He found his niche as a basketball player while playing for coach Yeng Guiao's Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, where he was known as one of the league's toughest players. While with Rain or Shine, he also became teammates with J.R. Quiñahan, and together they formed a duo in the low block, called the Extra Rice, Inc., owing to their weight and huge appetite. Born: November 30, 1986, in Gubat, Sorsogon, Philippines. College: Philippine Christian University.
  9. Noli Locsin - Luis Manuel B. Locsin, better known as Noli Locsin, is a Filipino retired professional basketball player. Dubbed as "The Tank", he is best known for his playing years with the Ginebra San Miguel franchise in the Philippine Basketball Association. Locsin played for the RP Youth team in 1990 before suiting up for back-to-back UAAP titlist De La Salle Green Archers. He had a brief stint with Triple-V Foodmasters in the Philippine Basketball League prior to its disbandment and then played for Nikon Electric Fan which completed a cinderella finish in the PBL. When 6-9 Marlou Aquino, the most sought-after rookie, was out of the picture in the 1994 PBA draft, Ginebra, now renamed Tondeña 65, and the team that will pick first in the amateur draft, went for the next best option in Noli Locsin, a burly 6-3 power forward who can barrel his way into the toughest walls of the defenders. He showed the Tondeña ballclub that it made the right choice when he emerged as the team's leading scorer and the league's leading local rebounder with his rookie season averages of 18.5 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.9 assists in 34.9 minutes. His stats are not enough through as Tondeña's struggles continued, winning just 12 of their 32 games in the 1994 season. Playing for player-coach Robert Jaworski's "never-say-die" system, he flourished playing power forward while being undersized at only 6-3 without being able to develop outside shooting. A consistent low post threat, Locsin closed the size gap with his strength and skill although he began to fade out as soon as he parted ways with Jaworski. Before the arrival of Fil-Ams in the PBA, Locsin was considered one of the top bruisers of his time in a time when it was rare for a Filipino player with his bulk to move as quick and leap as he did. Locsin was then traded to Pop Cola in the mid-season in 1999 for Vergel Meneses. He drifted to other PBA teams such as Tanduay and Red Bull before retiring. Born: October 19, 1971, in Bacolod, Philippines. College: De La Salle University.
  10. Bong Hawkins - Rene "Bong" Hawkins Jr. is a Filipino retired professional basketball player of the Philippine Basketball Association. He is the son of character actor Rene Hawkins, Sr. A power forward with the good sense of timing inside the shaded area, Bong was drafted as the second overall pick in the 1991 PBA draft. The former Perpetual Help cager was chosen by Presto coach Jimmy Mariano when the Tivolis traded Manny Victorino to Pepsi. Hawkins twisted his knee during practice and was forced to sit out in the entire first conference. He finally debut in Tivoli Milk uniform at the All-Filipino Conference and asserted his might. In 1993, he was absorbed by newcomer Sta. Lucia Realtors, which took over the disbanded Presto franchise. Bong played one conference as a Realtor before being traded to Alaska Milkmen for Paul Alvarez beginning the 1993 PBA Commissioner's Cup. After the 2005-06 PBA season, he retired and worked for Tim Cone as one of his assistant coaches. During the 25th Anniversary of Alaska last September 27, 2010, his number 16 was retired along with Johnny's number 14. He is currently on the coaching staff for the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons Men's Basketball Team. Born: November 6, 1967, in Manila, Philippines. College: University of Perpetual Help System DALTA.
  11. Chito Loyzaga - Joaquín "Chito" Cuerva Loyzaga is a Filipino former professional basketball player and basketball commissioner. He is currently the Athletics Director of the NU Bulldogs in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines. He played for the San Beda College in the NCAA before going on to play in the Philippine Basketball Association. In the PBA, Loyzaga played one game for YCO-Tanduay, then migrated to Australia for two years. He came back to play for Toyota in 1983. After Toyota disbanded, Loyzaga moved to Great Taste, where he became part of the team's dynasty of four straight championships. In 1986, he was shipped to Ginebra San Miguel, where he spent all of his last eight seasons in the PBA, winning three championships. A seven-time recipient of the Philippine Basketball Association All-Defensive Team award from 1985 to 1992, Loyzaga made a name for himself as a straight-up defensive stopper, using his heft and quick hands to guard the league's best big men, including the great Ramon Fernandez, and later, Alvin Patrimonio. He retired from basketball after the 1993 PBA season. Loyzaga also played for the Philippines men's national basketball team in the 1990 Asian Games where he distinguished himself by helping limit North Korean center Ri Myung Hun despite a height discrepancy of over a foot and a half between them. Loyzaga is the son of Philippine basketball great Carlos Loyzaga and Vicky Cuerva. He and brother Joey Loyzaga became one of the few siblings to have played in the PBA, eventually playing together with Ginebra San Miguel. Loyzaga is married to Maritoni Yulo, with whom he has three children, namely: Celina, Jose Joaquin, and Cecilia. In 2002, Loyzaga became the fourth commissioner of the Metropolitan Basketball Association. He was also a commissioner and executive director of the Philippine Sports Commission from 2010 to 2012. Born: August 28, 1958, in Manila, Philippines. College: San Beda College.
  12. Nelson Asaytono - Nelson Asaytono is a Filipino retired professional basketball player who played for Purefoods, Swift/Sunkist/Pop Cola, San Miguel Beer, and Red Bull in the PBA during his 17-year career. Asaytono's second stint Pop Cola was a forgettable one, as he started to slow down as he was still at the bench. He spent his last four seasons with the Red Bull Barako until the 2005-06 season. On April 7, 2005, he passed Crispa great Philip Cezar for the fifth spot all-time scoring list after tallying with 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting. Currently, he is fifth in the PBA all-time scoring list with 12,268 total points in 796 career games, behind only Ramon Fernandez, Abet Guidaben, Alvin Patrimonio and Atoy Co. Born: January 25, 1967, in San Teodoro, Oriental Mindoro, Philippines. College: University of Manila.