Edward Santana leads group of 40-20 in the LNB

Some of the players with whom they shared the field are already coaches. Others are assistants. There are even team managers. Including members of the Dominican Sports Hall of Fame.

But there are three basketball players who, after four decades of life and 20 as professionals, are still contributing, to the extent of their possibilities and opportunities, to the success of their squads in the National Basketball League (LNB).

Edward Santana (43 years old) is the lifetime leader in points and rebounds in the LNB. He is now with his fourth franchise on the circuit – the Puerto Plata Mariners – he also played for Cañeros del Este, Titanes and Indios. His physique has barely changed over time and he is defined as one of those who take his work more seriously.

“Only God knows when I’m going to retire. Obviously we have to close cycles, but for now there is a lot left, I am going to continue working even though I know it is not very far away”, said the veteran who toured all the leagues in Spain for 11 years, including the ACB, and shone with the Dominican team with participation in World Cups, Pan American, Central American and Central Basketball.

He adds to his profile champion titles in practically every top tournament in the country in which he has participated, including a couple in the LNB.

Manuel Guzmán (41 years old) is a former LNB champion with Leones de Santo Domingo (2011) who was with the team when it was called Panteras and who later went through the Titanes and Soles de Santo Domingo Este quintets. He is a two-time district tournament MVP just like Santana. He has passed 2,000 points scored in the National League.

“I hope to play two or three more years if my body holds up and they give me the opportunity. I am always ready to play with passion, heart and determination. Age is just a number. Now I go to the gym, for the first time I am doing weights, I run for 20-25 minutes and do sit-ups. I am calm and at peace with the family”, says Guzmán.

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He was with the national team between 2006 and 2017. He was part of two of the most important medals in Dominican history: the bronze in the 2011 Pre-Olympic in Mar del Plata, Argentina and the gold in the 2012 Centrobasket in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Juan Araujo (40 years old). Another of the members of the group of two thousand points in the LNB. Since the birth of the league as Lidoba in 2005, Araujo has carried his quality through the teams of Panteras (Leones), Cocolos de San Pedro de Macorís, Indios de San Francisco, Titanes and Reales de La Vega.

Owner of one of the safest baskets in the middle distance, he has been dedicated to the courts with successful participation in the higher tournaments, especially with the team of the Rafael Barias club, from Villa Consuelo, in the district superior.

He is recognized for his great work ethic and discipline, as well as excellent physical preparation, which has allowed him to stay in such a demanding sport for so long.

One who knocks on the doors of the group is Juan Pablo Montás (1984) who after being a figure with the Cañeros del Este in versions that were crowned champions now assumes a substitute place with the Leones de Santo Domingo.

Montás, at the time, was a kind of “LeBron James” at the top of La Romana and also had his taste with the national team, including the silver medal-winning squad at the 2010 Centrobasket held in Santo Domingo.

“You have to be mentally healthy and strong because there are changes in your physique and with age you can lose a lot of your athleticism. That’s why I work different things and I’m always curious to learn new things”, explains Montás.

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