PBA: Sean Anthony injury leaves huge gap at Phoenix
Chris Banchero’s departure from the Phoenix Super LPG franchise is not anticipated to be felt as hard if Sean Anthony, the do-it-all forward the Fuel Masters acquired last year, has come out of sick bay as scheduled.
That being the case, coach Topex Robinson and his intrepid Fuel Masters are preparing themselves to grab the bull by the horns once the Governors’ Cup resumes.
“Sean is still out. He will most likely play next conference,” Robinson told the Inquirer on Thursday, a day after Banchero made his transfer to Meralco official and left a void to the tune of 18 points, four assists and two steals—Banchero’s averages—that he would need someone to fill.
Anthony, easily one of the most underrated stars in the league, was projected to rejoin the club sometime in the middle of the conference after undergoing a foot procedure upon arrival from a trade with North Port.
But Anthony hasn’t recovered the way he should, and it has so far left Robinson pondering on the things that the 6-foot-4 bruiser could bring.
Robinson believes that the stat-stuffing Filipino-Canadian is very much like his former star at Phoenix, Calvin Abueva.
“What he could bring to us is that second push—especially with this tournament having a really quick turnaround,” he had said. “We’re looking to sustain our winning ways while waiting for Sean. And then when he comes in, that second wind kicks in. Hopefully, it’s gonna work out well for us.”
Anthony’s recovery is dragging on. On top of that, “other concerns,” according to Robinson, will also keep the workhorse from suiting up for the 3-2-Fuel Masters when the PBA reopens on Feb. 11.
But this is the hand that Robinson and Phoenix were dealt. And there’s no other recourse but to take it head-on.
“We will do with what we have,” the young mentor said.
The Fuel Masters still have another do-it-all player in import Paul Harris, and of course, Justin Chua, Jason Perkins and cornerstone Matthew Wright.