Blackwater face-lift plans hit snag as top pick Rosser sidelined 6-8 weeks
The misery that hounded the country’s basketball teams in the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games has seeped into hard-luck Blackwater in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
The Bossing, who are hoping to shed off the whipping-boy billboard welded to their franchise, suffered a major setback in that effort as Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser, the versatile big man being looked upon as the team’s savior, suffered a finger injury that will keep him out of at least half of the coming Philippine Cup.
“He fractured his right middle finger in the SEA Games,” Rosser’s handler Charlie Dy told the Inquirer on Thursday.
“He will be out six to eight weeks,” added the agent, who said the timing was unfortunate since “Brandon has been looking forward to when the conference starts.”
“While it’s a setback in our preparations, we would not risk him reinjuring his finger,” said Blackwater interim coach Ariel Vanguardia, who is optimistic of getting his prized addition active within four to six weeks.
Rosser was all set to backstop a Blackwater side looking to improve on a sole victory in a disastrous 2021 season where it set—by a wide margin—the league record for consecutive losses.
“He gives us the big man we badly need. And I have very good reviews about him, especially after he played with my former player at [Jose Rizal University] Marvin Hayes,” Vanguardia said in a previous interview with the Inquirer.
“‘No soy sauce,’ as Marvin would say,” added Vanguardia, a play on the Filipino term “toyo,” which is both a condiment and a word used to describe diva-like players who use their talent as an excuse to act spoiled. “[Brandon is] a good rim protector who can run the floor. He can score inside and out—a complete player.” Rosser was signed to a three-year deal on Thursday, joining fellow incoming rookies Mark Dyke and Ato Ular and new Blackwater pickups: veteran big man Yousef Taha, and former Alaska (now Converge) big man Rey Publico.
SEA Games defeats
Rosser was part of the men’s 3×3 team that failed to defend its gold medal from the 2019 SEA Games.
The 3×3 defeat was just one of the debacles basketball suffered in the biennial meet hosted by Hanoi, Vietnam, recently.
Most notably, the men’s 5×5 squad surrendered the throne it had sat on for more than three decades in the SEA Games, its aura of invincibility shredded by a well-prepared Indonesian squad in the gold medal match. The women’s 3×3 team also failed to defend its crown.
Of the four basketball teams sent to Hanoi, only the women’s team finished with the gold medal, its second straight in the regional contest.
Blackwater set the league record for consecutive losses in the PBA, collecting 29 straight defeats to reduce the old record, defunct club Presto’s 18, into a speck in the rearview mirror.
The Bossing were hoping that a bumper crop of draftees, including the No. 1 overall pick Rosser, would turn their fortunes around.
Inquirer’s special coverage of the Hanoi SEA Games 2021.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.