If you think we’re done introducing double-threat athletes, then think again! This new year, we’re bringing a fresh face to the scene and he’s definitely worth the hype.
While the charming hoopers in the UAAP may be more familiar to most, the NCAA also has its own share of standout talents that are worth paying attention to. Lyceum of the Philippines University boasts its very own Mclaude Guadaña — a 22-year-old basketball player who rises to the occasion when it matters the most.
Known as the "Heartthrob Pirate," Mclaude truly lives up to the name with both exceptional skills and appealing visuals, making him someone you won't want to overlook. Mclaude's impressive performance as LPU's scoring machine last season not only earned him his nickname but also served as motivation to elevate his game and deliver his absolute best.
“Being called a ‘Heartthrob Pirate’ is a pleasure for me because it boosts my confidence inside and outside the court,” shares the 5’11 shooting guard.
What's even more impressive is his mentality when confronted with a significant slump early in the season. Finding his rhythm just in time, Mclaude attributed their success to pure teamwork that carried them through critical situations.
“I'm pleased that my teammates are stepping up when I'm facing offensive challenges, to the extent that I don't need to force any shots. Meanwhile, my winner mentality kicks in when times get tough for us, providing me with the adrenaline to step up during crucial moments and find my rhythm in the mid-season."
Apart from his heart for the sport, Mclaude is equally devoted to his artistic pursuits. Seizing every opportunity that comes his way, Mclaude's decision to sign with GMA Sparkle Artist is unquestionably a choice worth making. When faced with the choice of being recognized as Mclaude the athlete or Mclaude the artist, it takes time for him to decide because of his genuine love for both roles.
"I would choose to be recognized as the artist-athlete Mclaude. It's a tough decision because I have always aspired to both of these roles, but I believe that what is meant for me will ultimately make itself known.”
It's no secret that balancing more than just one role demands a significant time and effort. In fact, the saying "you can't serve two masters at the same time" holds true to some extent. However, if there's anything Mclaude wants to prove, it's that he doesn't settle for anything less.
"It’s very hard to balance my time as an athlete and as an artist. But what motivates me is aiming to be above average. For sure, there are a lot of questions about why I don’t just focus on one career from my followers, friends, and maybe 'doubters'. I don't settle for an easy start leading to a difficult life. If they believe they go hard in life, I go even harder and smarter."
Being a key player in important games, juggling artistry and athleticism, and never settling for less simply defines Mclaude as someone who loves taking on challenges—and rising above them.
If his basketball skills and appearance don't resonate with you, then surely these characteristics are enough to make you appreciate and admire him beyond the game.
Photography by Vyn Radovan
Hair and Grooming by Bhads Castor
Styling by Mark Ranque
Words and Interview by Kryzzle Cailing
Special thanks to Sparkle GMA Artist Center
Shot at 48 Scout Castor House Studio