PBA makes Sultan its newest memberBy Musong R. Castillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
AS EXPECTED, Mikee Romero’s Sultan 900 Capital, Inc. was accepted yesterday by the PBA as its newest member, assuring the 38th Season of the pro league of the same 10-team field in the Philippine Cup starting Sept. 30.
“Finally, my dream has come true,” Romero told reporters in a press conference, moments after the board of governors voted unanimously to accept Sultan 900 which earlier bought the franchise of Coca-Cola.
“It’s a childhood dream,” Romero, garbed in an elegant all-black suit, added. “(Initially), I’ve dreamt of playing in the PBA, and now I end up owning a franchise.”
Romero will take over a squad backstopped by JV Casio and scoring champion Gary David.
The Batang Pier’s first official PBA activity will happen tomorrow during the Rookie Draft.
“It was smooth sailing. The board wholeheartedly accepted Sultan 900 Capital Inc.,” said Robert Non of Barangay Ginebra, the newly installed board chair.
But while the board members approved Romero’s application, it did not grant any of his wishes, as far as concessions are concerned.
Instead, the team will inherit the No. 10 pick, which naturally belonged to Powerade/Coca-Cola.
Glenn Capacio and Ricky Dandan will be acting as coaches on interim capacities.
Bo Perasol, who guided Powerade to a runner-up finish in the PH Cup last year, will not come back after accepting an offer to coach Ateneo when Norman Black leaves after the UAAP season.
Capacio and Dandan are in the short list of candidates and there are reports that Barako Bull’s Junel Baculi is also being eyed.
Former La Salle stalwart BJ Manalo has been named team manager while Romero’s friend Erick Arejola will be the chief of basketball operation.
“I’ll still put up a run-and-gun and physical team,” said Romero. “We’ll rebuild the team toward what the organization wants.
“I’m very happy,” added Romero, who met the Powerade players and coaches Thursday.