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In the realm of Filipino basketball legends, the name Samboy Lim shines brightly. Known for his gravity-defying dunks and exceptional skills, Samboy “The Skywalker” Lim left an indelible mark on the sport. This article delves into the life, career, and legacy of this iconic athlete.
|Avelino Borromeo Lim Jr. (Samboy Lim)
|Date of Birth
|April 1, 1962
|Place of Birth
|Quezon City, Philippines
|Date of Death
|December 23, 2023
|Age at Death
|61 years old
|Place of Death
|6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
|185 lb (84 kg)
|Small forward / Shooting guard
|San Beda College
|Colegio de San Juan de Letran
|Formerly married to Darlene Marie Berberabe
|Jamie Christine Berberabe Lim
|Net Worth (Estimate)
|$1 million – $9 million
Early Life and Background
Samboy Lim, born Avelino Borromeo Lim Jr., entered the world on April 1, 1962, in Quezon City, Philippines. From an early age, his passion for basketball was evident. Standing at 6 feet tall and weighing 185 pounds, Lim possessed the perfect physique for a career in the sport. However, his journey to basketball stardom was far from ordinary.
Discovering Talent and Overcoming Challenges
At the tender age of 15, Lim was spotted by former player Jun Celis while playing in Quezon City. Recognizing his potential, scholarships became a lifeline for the young talent, allowing him to complete his high school and college education. The death of his father during high school made these scholarships critical for his future.
Lim’s excellence on the court continued to shine during his amateur career. After a year at Letran, he became a pivotal player for Letran’s championship team in the NCAA, narrowly missing out on MVP awards. His talents also earned him a spot on the RP Youth team and the national squad, where he contributed to various championship victories.
In 1986, Samboy Lim embarked on his professional journey, joining the Lhuillier Jewelers and later becoming an integral part of the San Miguel Beermen in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA). Throughout his 11-year professional career, Lim primarily played as a small forward and shooting guard.
The Grand Slam and Nickname
Despite grappling with injuries that occasionally sidelined him, Lim played a crucial role in San Miguel’s success, including the prestigious Grand Slam championship in 1989. His acrobatic style of play and remarkable hang time earned him the iconic nickname “The Skywalker.” This moniker cemented his status as a beloved figure in Filipino basketball history.
Jersey No. 9 and MVP Title
Samboy Lim was often recognized on the court by his choice of jersey number, 9, and knee-high socks—a tribute to basketball legend Julius Erving. In 1990, he enjoyed an injury-free season, becoming San Miguel’s leading scorer. His outstanding performance earned him the MVP title at the PBA All-Star Game, further solidifying his reputation as a basketball great.
Retirement and Legacy
Lim retired from professional basketball in 1997 but made a brief return in 1998 as the team manager for Welcoat House Paints. He continued to be involved in basketball management and was named one of PBA’s 25 Greatest Players. In 2016, the PBA introduced the Samboy Lim Sportsmanship Award in his honor, reflecting his ethical behavior and integrity on and off the court.
Samboy Lim’s personal life also garnered attention. He was previously married to Darlene Marie Berberabe, the former CEO of the PAG-IBIG Fund. Although the couple later separated, they shared a daughter named Jamie Christine Berberabe Lim.
Jamie Christine Berberabe Lim, the daughter of Samboy and Darlene, achieved remarkable success in her own right. She secured a gold medal in the 2019 SEA Games and graduated summa cum laude in Mathematics from the University of the Philippines, where she also served as the valedictorian of her class. The Lim family’s legacy extended beyond the basketball court, encompassing academic and athletic excellence.
Samboy Lim’s Passing
Tragically, Samboy Lim passed away on December 23, 2023, in Pasig, Philippines, at the age of 61. His untimely death marked the end of an era in Filipino basketball, but his contributions and achievements continue to be celebrated and remembered.
Samboy Lim’s Net Worth
While the exact figure remains unverified, Samboy Lim’s estimated net worth ranges from $1 million to $9 million. His earnings primarily stemmed from his successful career as a basketball player. However, his legacy in Philippine basketball transcends financial evaluations, reflecting his enduring impact on the sport.
In the annals of Philippine basketball, Samboy “The Skywalker” Lim’s name will forever be etched as a symbol of excellence, resilience, and sportsmanship. His journey from a young talent in Quezon City to a celebrated basketball icon serves as an inspiration to aspiring athletes. Samboy Lim’s legacy will continue to soar, much like his gravity-defying dunks.
1. Who was Samboy Lim’s wife?
Samboy Lim was previously married to Darlene Marie Berberabe, former CEO of PAG-IBIG Fund.
2. What was Samboy Lim’s nickname?
Samboy Lim was known as “The Skywalker” due to his high-flying and acrobatic style of play.
3. When did Samboy Lim pass away?
Samboy Lim passed away on December 23, 2023, at the age of 61 in Pasig, Philippines.
4. What is Samboy Lim’s daughter’s name and achievements?
Samboy Lim’s daughter is Jamie Christine Berberabe Lim, a SEA Games gold medalist and summa cum laude graduate in Mathematics from the University of the Philippines.
5. How long did Samboy Lim play for the San Miguel Beermen?
Samboy Lim played for the San Miguel Beermen throughout his entire 11-year professional career from 1986 to 1997 in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).