JaVale McGee has certainly taught the basketball world to expect the unexpected when it comes to his career, so the newest development featuring the Denver Nuggets' big man probably shouldn't be all that surprising. It still kind of is, though.
In important Filipino politics news, there's a bill circulating through the House of Representatives that would make McGee -- the 7 footer born and raised in Michigan -- an official citizen of the Philippines. Not for nothing, of course, but so that he'd be eligible to play for the country's national team.
A bill has been filed in the House of Representatives to naturalize Denver Nuggets center JaVale McGee to make him eligible for the SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national team.
Antipolo City representative Robbie Puno filed House Bill 6169, which would make McGee a Filipino citizen. Puno, in his bill's cover letter, cited McGee's "remarkable track record in the United States' professional basketball scene" as consideration for his inclusion in the SMART-Gilas program.
McGee made headlines in the Philippines last summer while waiting on the lockout to end, leading to quite a bit of talk that he might join the Filipino basketball team at some point in the future.
heard from @coachot that d Phil national team is about to be formed. Would love to represent d Phils if given d chance— Pierre McGee (@JaValeMcGee34) January 7, 2012
Most assumed that was all talk, but now that there's an actual bill going through the government, things are seemingly heading further in that direction.
The basketball lovers in the Philippines deserve NBA talent in their country as often as possible. McGee, though not exactly technically sound, should be able to add to the fun brand of basketball the Philippines became famous for around the world following the publication of this excellent book by Rafe Bartholomew.
And seriously, imagine all of the awesome goaltends he'll commit!