MANILA, Philippines – More than anything, Robert Bolick said his move to Japan’s B.League was all due to his pursuit of international experience.
Bolick admitted that his move from the PBA to another professional league abroad to play for the Fukushima Firebonds stemmed from his curiosity as to whether his game could “translate to Japan.”
“Honestly, it just comes from experience. PBA and B.League are different and I just want to try if my game can translate to Japan and just try something new,” the sharpshooter said at an online press conference on Wednesday.
“It wasn’t really about money or anything, it’s just because I want to try something new. I want to see if I can come in and play in a different culture so that by the end of my career I can say, ‘Okay, I’ve been an importer in Japan.’ You don’t know what the league will look like in ten years and that is the most important thing for me.”
In last year’s PBA Governors’ Cup, Bolick missed Northport Batang Pier’s first matches, which cost them in the long run. They finished with a 3-8 record and missed the playoffs.
When Bolick suited up for the Batang Pier during the season-ending conference, he averaged 21.6 points. 5.4 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 1.0 steals per game.
The San Beda product was expected to land a new deal with Northport, but he ultimately signed with Fukushima last May.
What he can bring to the Firebond, he said, was his experience playing the two-guard position at international level.
“On the field, I’m like the most experienced guard here, playing in the World Cup and internationally, so I just want to be a helping hand and give them what I learned from my seniors when I was a rookie in the Philippines. ,” he said.
It won’t be easy for Bolick as Fukushima is a B2 division team in the B.League, meaning the road to the league title will be long and arduous.
However, Bolick said Fukushima’s presence in B2 was also one of the reasons he decided to sign with the Firebonds.
“That was one of the reasons why I wanted to go to B2. In B1 you win a championship, but here it goes to the next step. Not only do you win a championship, you also get promotion against the B1.”
“That was one of the exciting aspects of joining this team, helping them get to B1. That’s something you won’t forget for the rest of your life and I just wanted to take that opportunity.”