Though the Philippine squad was eliminated by their taller Russian foes on Friday, teenage basketball sensation Kobe Paras dominated for the second year the slam dunk competition of the FIBA 3X3 Under-18 World Championship in Debrecen, Hungary.
Paras, 17, did something spectacularly creative to impress the judges and get a perfect 30 points—a reverse two-handed dunk executed after jumping over teammate Ricci Rivero.
“I wouldn’t have won this without my teammates, coaches and my dad,” Paras said via Twitter. “Big ups to my man Jalek Felton. We put on one hell of a show.”
Paras faced the American Felton in the championship round after garnering 58 points in the semifinals for his impressive reverse dunk and between the legs dunk maneuvers. Felton and Paras both entered the championship round each carrying an identical 29-point cards, which they’ve earned via between the legs dunk trick.
Felton finished second and Uruguay’s Agustin Da Costa third. Paras won his first slam dunk title in the meet in Jakarta, Indonesia in 2013.
Paras, now a student of University of California Los Angeles with Mike Nieto of Ateneo De Manila University, Ricci Rivero of La Salle Greenhills and Richard Escoto of Far Eastern University represented the Philippines in the three-on-three basketball competition.
The Filipinos lost to Poland, 13-15, in their first game but was able to bounce back against host Hungary, 19-18, and then beat Kazakhstan, 13-8. The Philippine squad, however, absorbed a 9-21 defeat from the unbeaten Russians.