Pinoy Sakuragi in the PBA Marc Pingris

Marc Pingris: The "Pinoy Sakuragi" - A Legend of Filipino Basketball

Marc Pingris, A Legend of Filipino Basketball, holds a unique place in the hearts of Filipinos, and one name stands out among the many legends who have graced the courts: Marc Pingris, fondly known as the “Pinoy Sakuragi.” This article explore the basketball legend’s life, career, and lasting legacy.

Who exactly is Pinoy Sakuragi?

Marc Pingris, born in Quezon City, Philippines, on October 16, 1981, is a name linked with Filipino basketball greatness. His alias, “Pinoy Sakuragi,” is a play on the iconic Japanese manga and anime character “Sakuragi Hanamichi” from “Slam Dunk.” Marc Pingris, like his fictional counterpart, is recognized for his perseverance, strong determination, and unrivaled ability to bounce. His never-ending energy, charming on-court appearance, and tenacity to outrebound opponents are reminiscent of the well-known manga character.

Marc Pingris and Hanamichi Sakuragi had a lot in common: difficult upbringings, strong personalities, limited beginning talents, and an unwavering work ethic.

Takenori Akagi, Shohoku’s captain, provided a vital lesson to underline Pingris’ importance to the squad. Despite his inability to score, Pingris has the potential to make a significant impact by outworking everyone on the floor.

Pingris, like Hanamichi, profited from the guidance of an experienced player. This mentoring is a good indicator for any young athlete because someone sees their potential and is prepared to devote time and effort to their growth.

Marc Pingris Arise

Marc Pingris’ basketball career began in his birthplace of Pozorrubio, Pangasinan. He initially polished his abilities in the dusty courts of the province. His lowly origins highlight the traditional story of a small-town youngster with huge ambitions.

Pingris’ potential was evident from an early age, and he quickly drew the attention of scouts and coaches. His commanding physical presence and natural agility made him an outstanding candidate for Philippine basketball. He swiftly ascended the ranks, garnering notoriety in amateur and professional competitions.

PBA Journey

Marc Pingris, often known as “Pinoy Sakuragi,” was FedEx’s third overall choice in the 2004 PBA draft. He was eventually moved to Purefoods, where he stayed for 14 seasons. Pingris established himself as one of the best defenders in the PBA during this time, guiding Purefoods to several titles. He was named Finals MVP after playing a crucial part in earning the 2006 Philippine Cup triumph. In 2008, Pingris joined San Miguel and won another PBA title in the 2009 Fiesta Cup before returning to Purefoods, where he won seven more titles.


Pingris played for Gilas Pilipinas and helped them win the silver medal at the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship, qualifying them for the 2014 FIBA World Cup. Pingris become one of the Best Gilas Power Forward of All Time because the love of the Pilipino to his dedication and passion on Basketball!


Pingris announced his retirement from the PBA on May 25, 2021; following a successful 16-year career with several titles and personal achievements, it’s time for a new chapter. I still vividly recall the moment my name was called during the 2004 PBA Draft—that’s when the journey of a young boy from the market began.

To my beloved wife, Danica, thank you for your unwavering love and support. Your sacrifices and encouragement have been my driving force throughout my career. I am forever grateful for your presence by my side, urging me to strive harder and never lose sight of my goals. I love you!

Above all, I sincerely thank God for His guidance and abundant blessings.

To all aspiring dreamers, always remember that talent is nothing without heart.

As I bid farewell to my glorious 16-year career, 


James Yap Tribute to Pinoy Sakuragi Marc Pingris

Pinoy Sakuragi Marc Pingris Retirement


Transition to MPBL

The 40-year-old Pinoy Sakuragi’s brief six-month retirement stint concludes, but his basketball journey continues. After retiring from the PBA, Pingris briefly returned to play for the Nueva Ecija Rice Vanguards in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) before joining the Imus SV Squad for the 2023 season.

Sakuragi joins PBA Motoclub

The PBA Motoclub debuted in June 2020 during the PBA’s sabbatical due to the COVID-19 epidemic. The club quickly acquired popularity as a moto-vlogging channel led by renowned PBA individuals such as Marc Pingris. Pingris’ strong participation in the club may be linked to his respected stature in the PBA and his interest in motorcycles and vlogging.

Beyond merely showing motorcycle trips, the PBA Motoclub has become linked with philanthropic causes and entertaining activities. Marc Pingris and other PBA stars actively engage in these initiatives, increasing the club’s effect and reach in the community.

With its sportsmanship, companionship, and generosity, the PBA Motoclub has become more than simply a vlogging platform. It provides a forum for PBA players like Pingris to engage with fans, advocate for important issues, and indulge in their mutual passion for motorcycle


Finally, Marc Pingris, often known as “Pinoy Sakuragi,” will be remembered as a basketball icon in the Philippines. His relentless passion and fantastic record of accomplishments have left an everlasting impression on the sport. Pingris’ reputation is written in the annals of Filipino basketball history, whether it’s his championship-winning efforts in the PBA or his international representation of the Philippines. On and off the court, he fully represents what it means to be a Pinoy Sakuragi.


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Marc Pingris measures 6 feet 4 inches (193 cm) tall, making him an intimidating presence on the basketball court.

According to the most recent information, Marc Pingris has retired from professional basketball. However, his legacy and impact on the game continue to inspire young Filipino basketball players. But now he is now coming back on PBA to showcase that he can still play.

Marc Pingris is recognized for his high-energy, defensive-minded style of play. He is his squad’s excellent rebounder, shot blocker, and defensive stopper.

Marc Pingris was given the “Pinoy Sakuragi” moniker because his playing style resembled the manga character Hanamichi Sakuragi from “Slam Dunk.” Pingris, like Sakuragi, is recognized on the court for his enthusiasm, hustle, and drive.

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