It’s a go for Gilas PBA hopefuls
MANILA—With Smart Gilas management opting not to tender offers to its players who applied for the PBA Draft, it looks as though the seven nationals and star amateur Paul Lee will dominate the annual event Sunday at the Robinson’s Place in Ermita.
JV Casio, the former La Salle ace, and Filipino-Americans Marcio Lassiter and Chris Lutz are among those expected to be picked early, along with Lee, the best player never to play for the Smart Gilas program.
Casio and Lee, the 6-foot playmaker out of the University of the East, headlines the 34-man pool that includes Nationals Dylan Ababou, Jason Ballesteros, Mac Baracael and Mark Barroca.
Several scouts have said surprises could mark the first round, with most of them pointing to unknown Julius Pasculado as a legitimate sleeper.
Meanwhile, Barangay Ginebra will make a coaching change for the 37th Season that opens on Oct. 2 with Siot Tanquingcen joining Jong Uichico as co-head coaches of the Kings.
In another development, B-Meg is also looking for someone to replace Jorge Gallent after a dismal campaign last season, with San Miguel Corp. president and CEO Ramon S. Ang announcing that the new coach “will be coming from within the family.”
“Pag masama ang tayo, kailangan ang konting balasa (If the standing is not okay, a shuffle is needed),” Ang said during a gathering with a select group of PBA Press Corps members recently. “Basta within the family lang din. Sila-sila lang ang magpapalitan diyan at walang mawawala. Mag-ro-rotate muna sila (The replacement will come from within the family. We will just rotate the coaches. No one’s is going to get axed).”
The Gin Kings wound up with a 34-24 win-loss record last season and finished second in the Commissioner’s Cup, third in the Philippine Cup and fourth in the Governor’s Cup.
Gallent, on the other hand, never really got to work his magic with the Llamados, who finished fourth in the Philippine Cup, seventh in the Commissioner’s Cup and sixth in the Governors for a 20-24 season slate.
Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas vice-chair and Maynilad president Ricky Vargas said management decided not to make offers anymore to the Smart Gilas draftees, with an insider saying management reached the decision since the PBA has been keeping a harmonious relationship with the SBP.
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