Anthony Jason James Helterbrand (born as Lamberto Romero Vicente, Jr. on October 14, 1976 in San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines), better known as Jayjay Helterbrand, is a Filipino-American professional basketball player in the Philippine Basketball Association for Barangay Ginebra San Miguel. Known by many as Helter Skelter, he is also known, along with backcourt tandem Mark Caguioa, as one-half of the so-called, The Fast and the Furious.
Helterbrand was born in Quezon City to Lamberto Heras Vicente and Melanie Jimenez Romero. The name on his birth certificate was Lamberto Romero Vicente, Jr. His father later died, and his mother took him along with his brother Francis and sister Rowena to the US when he was six. His mother remarried a US serviceman Ronald Helterbrand and changed his name to Anthony Helterbrand in 1986 at the age of 10.
He played one game for the Batangas Blades in the Metropolitan Basketball Association before signing with the Barangay Ginebra Kings in March 2000. He was recruited by Ginebra (by coach Ron Jacobs) to play back up for Bal David as preparation to supplant him in the starting lineup.
Helterbrand started being noticed when he began coming into the game with eventual 2001 PBA Rookie of the Year Mark Caguioa. Their exciting play led to them being called as the "Bandana Brothers" for the headbands they wear during games. During the 2004 PBA season, the fantastic duo were tagged as "The Fast and The Furious," the moniker has since been used to describe them. His tandem with Mark Caguioa is one of the most popular and arguably the best backcourt tandem in the league history.
In 2003, he went back to the States after his first contract with Ginebra expired and negotiation for a new one fell through. He came back at the start of 2004 and was a major contributor in the team's back-to-back championships that year.
Injury sidelined him for five months at the start of 2005 but has mainly recovered and even won two MVP awards for the year, the Brunei Cup and the 2005 PBA All-Stars. He is considered to be one of the best point guards in the league.
After he returned to Ginebra, he quickly made an impact and was named the Comeback Player of the Year by the PBA Press Corps. He assumed the starting point guard chores after Bal David got injured and was subsequently released. He was also named MVP in Team Pilipinas' victorious run in the Sultan Cup in Brunei.In 2008, he was again included in the RP Training Pool headed by Coach Yeng Guiao.
In 2009, Helterband was awarded the Best Player of the Fiesta Conference for leading the Kings to the finals, and he eventually won the Season MVP. But those awards were put into waste as he could not carry Team Pilipinas to a much higher finish as they lost to the Korean national team in the battle for 7th place in the 2009 FIBA Asia Championship. Helterbrand finished his stint with a ridiculous 1-11 from the three point area.
On June 8, 2009, he was awarded the 2008-2009 PBA season MVP, his first MVP award as a professional since entering the league in 2000.
Career highlights and awards
4× PBA Champion (2004, 2004-05, 2006-07, 2008)
7x PBA All-Star (2004-10)
2008-09 PBA Most Valuable Player
2008-09 PBA Mythical First Team
2009 PBA Fiesta Conference Best Player of the Conference
2008 PBA Fiesta Conference Best Player of the Conference
2007-08 PBA Mythical First Team
2007 PBA All-Star Game Co-Most Valuable Player (w/ Willie Miller)
2007 PBA Shooting Stars Co-Champion (w/ Dominic Uy & Panding Nince)
2006-07 PBA Philippine Cup Finals Most Valuable Player
2005 Brunei Sultan Cup Most Valuable Player
2005 PBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player
2004-05 PBA Comeback Player of the Year
2003 PBA Mr. Quality Minutes
After winning the PBA Most Valuable Player in 2009, his popularity has grown even further and he seems to be unable to handle his popularity. His attitude was changed, he became boastful and lived a life full of temptation. Even others have advised him to change his way of life, he doesn’t care. He does whatever he wants to do. After his MVP season, his career was slowed down due to injuries which affects his performance in playing basketball. But what changed Jayjay Helterbrand was when his then ten year old daughter, Jaylyn, got a severe disease and went into coma. The doctors told him to prepare for the worse, his daughter will die. He fell down on his knees, started crying and prayed to the Lord. He asked “Why my daughter instead of me? She’s so young, please spare her, I’ll do everything to pleased you”. After just an hour, his daughter woke up after being in coma for nine hours. This event changed him. He once thought of retiring from the professional league but continued to play instead. He’s still playing in the PBA today for the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel team and remains one of the most competitive point guards in the league together with his backcourt partner, the 2012 PBA Most Valuable Player Mark Caguioa.
After the miracle happened to his daughter, he surrendered himself to God. In November 2011, he started his own business, the Helterbrand Enterprise which sells customized shirts, jackets and other merchandise. All of his products carries either a Bible verse or Biblical phrases and messages in different, customizable designs. He used “The Good News” or TGN for short, as the brand name of his products .His business’ slogan is “Spreading the word of God in Stylish Way”. We all know that popularity is always an advantage when selling a product, but that’s not always the case. During the 2011 Philippine Cup, he started to wear his shirts during games but didn’t make an immediate impact to the fans and was unnoticed during that time. After his team being eliminated in the tournament late in December 2011, it was rumored that he will no longer return to play for Ginebra and will announce his retirement soon. Fans are waiting for his decision and begging Helterbrand to stay. After weeks of speculations, Helterbrand decided to stay and continue playing in the league. At the same time, he was able to promote his TGN apparel on national television during an interview in the AKTV Center. After that, fans started to have interest on his products. Sales are growing rapidly and his headquarters received a lot of orders. He then extend his shop’s selling hours to accommodate more customers. Co-players, former players, coaches, friends, and staffs from the PBA supported his products. Some celebrities also showed support on his products, especially RR Enriquez, Helterbrand’s girlfriend, a former Wowowee host and part of the original cast of Banana Split of ABS-CBN. After months and months, TGN’s popularity is still growing and was later on featured in Korina Sanchez’s Rated K. During an interview with Korina, he discussed the story behind TGN. Korina asked him “Why do you think the Lord chose you?”. He answered, “Because I know a lot of people looks up to me, and in my part, I can influence others and spread the words of God”. A part from his sales is being donated to the church and children’s cancer center, for those patients who can’t afford their hospital bills. Its been just more than a year since he started his business and its popularity still continues to grow as of today. Helterbrand is now planning to open another shop in Greenhills Shopping Center. His shop is presently located at Timog Avenue, Quezon City which is formerly located at N. Domingo, San Juan City.