PBA: Phoenix forward Jason Perkins out for season after knee surgery
MANILA, Philippines–Already reeling from the loss of Matthew Wright, Phoenix suffered another setback before the start of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup with lefty forward Jason Perkins expected to be sidelined for the rest of the season due to a knee injury.
Team manager Paolo Bugia confirmed that Perkins, a major part of the rotation with his ability to play inside and out, went under the knife recently to heal the pain that has been bothering him for some time.
“He underwent arthroscopic knee procedure and rehab is expected for the whole conference,” Bugia said on Friday.
Perkins averaged 16.0 ponts, 7.9 rebounds and 2.7 assists in nine games for the Fuel Masters, who missed out a quarterfinals berth after going 3-8.
Phoenix also decided to trade sophomore guard Aljun Melecio and big man Kris Porter to Converge in exchange for rookie Kurt Lojera and second-year center Ben Adamos.
Melecio will reunite with his former college coach Aldin Ayo, who was hired by Converge to replace Jeff Cariaso after a quarters berth in its maiden conference in the big league.
He won his only UAAP championship in 2016 with Ayo in charge of the La Salle Green Archers.
Javee Mocon and rookie Tyler Tio could be given increased roles by coach Topex Robinson following the loss of Wright and Perkins as the Fuel Masters try to contend for a playoff spot in the midseason tourney.
Mocon will now have a full conference with Phoenix after being acquired from Rain or Shine early in the Philippine Cup eliminations. He posted 8.7 points and 8.1 rebounds in 10 games for the Fuel Masters.
Tio showed why he was a steal as a second round choice, producing 11.7 points on a 49.1-percent clip from three-point range.
Kaleb Wesson will serve as Phoenix’s import for the Commissioner’s Cup which opens September 21.