TNT parades Kelly, Ryan versus Tigers

By Musong R. Castillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer

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 W L
San Miguel 8 1
Talk ?N Text 6 2
Derby Ace 5 3
Bgy. Ginebra 5 4
Alaska 4 4
R. or Shine 4 4
Coca-Cola 4 5
Sta. Lucia 4 5
B. Coffee 2 7
Air21 1 8

GAMES FRIDAY (Araneta Coliseum)
5 p.m.?Coca-Cola vs Talk ?N Text
7:30 p.m.?Rain or Shine vs Alaska

MANILA, Philippines?There?s now practically no dead spot in Talk ?N Text.

Already oozing with talent, the Tropang Texters became even more loaded with their acquisition of former MVP Kelly Williams and do-it-all guard Ryan Reyes from Sta. Lucia Realty Wednesday night.

The Texters, in return, sent Ali Peek, Nic Belasco and Pong Escobal to Sta. Lucia along with Yousif Aljamal and a promising rookie, former NCAA MVP Rogemar Menor, after obtaining them from Barako Coffee.

For their part in the three-team deal, the Coffee Makers got Texter Mark Isip and TNT?s second-round draft next year.

Although they practiced with their new team only Thursday, Williams and Reyes will give the Texters a tremendous boost when they tangle with the Coca-Cola Tigers at 5 p.m. Friday in the Fiesta Cup eliminations at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Rain or Shine and Alaska will collide in the second game at 7:30 p.m.

In a related development, Air21, slumping with seven straight losses, got a small shot in the arm after the Commissioner?s Office Thursday lifted the season-long suspension of point guard Wynne Arboleda.

Arboleda has been out of action for almost seven months after mauling a courtside fan on Oct. 16 last year in a game against guest team Smart Gilas. His first official game back will be this Saturday against Derby Ace in Panabo City.

Whether Williams could play for the Smart Gilas national team will be tackled in a special board meeting.

Under PBA rules, a player should only play for his mother club and for a national team formed by the pro league.

The arrival of Reyes could pose some problems for coach Chot Reyes, who already has an abundance of talent at the guard spot.

Mac Cardona, Jimmy Alapag and Jason Castro are already there and Reyes may face the same problem bugging coach Jong Uichico with Barangay Ginebra boosting its guard rotation with Willie Miller.

Coca-Cola will also parade a new import in Rashad Bell in its bid to arrest a four-game skid.

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