Mix of old and new for Rain or Shine

Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines—Rain or Shine has been a consistent title contender in the PBA.

Heading into the new PBA season, however, the Elasto Painters have to deal with some minor transition pains if they want to keep their status as one of the teams to reckon with.

Rain or Shine had one of the most bountiful haul in the 2019 draft when it picked up four talents in the first round alone in Adrian Wong, Clint Doliguez, Prince Rivero, and Saldene Salvacion.

It’s up to head coach Caloy Garcia to infuse his new talent to his already established squad and, so far, he wants his rookies to keep on improving ahead of the new season.

“I think the rookies have been doing well but of course among the four it’s Prince who has seen the shortest playing time,” said Garcia in Filipino Saturday at Aero Center.

Rivero is listed at 6-foot-3 but if he intends to play the power forward position in the PBA, he has to bulk up more.

“I need to get the bigs in shape and at the same time Norbert (Torres), Jewel (Ponferada), and Beau (Belga) are going to play big roles in the team.”

Rain or Shine has so far played in a series of tune-up games where Garcia put his new talents to the test.

Garcia said his youngsters have been sometimes shy to take their shots, and that’s something he wants to change before the PBA opens on March 8.

“We still have time, three or two-and-a-half weeks so we have time to get everyone into the system,” said Garcia.

“The problem is the four new guys and Ryan (Araña) because they still have to adjust to the way we play.”