PBA Draft – Petron Wants Smart Gilas Players

By Lily O Ramos

Petron Boosters will parade the same roster responsible for winning the recent Governors Cup when the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) unveils its 37th season this October.

Shopinas’ taking over the franchise of Barako Bull, makes Lordy Tugade and Jojo Duncil doubtful of a possible return with the team, but the rest of the players, including expirees Danny Ildefonso and Sunday Salvacion, have been assured by coach Ato Agustin of coming back for a shot at a back-to-back championship.

“Danny I’s (Ildefonso) contract is expiring this Sunday, but Boss Hec (Calma) is now taking care of their contracts, so they will be staying with us,” said the champion mentor, appearing in the weekly PSA Forum at Shakey’s U.N. Ave. two days after steering the Boosters to an improbable upset of Talk ‘N’ Text in the season-ending conference that doomed the Tropang Texters’ Grand Slam bid.

Big man Jay Washington and guard Joseph Yeo, who both sat out the best-of-seven Finals owing to various injuries, won’t be back in action until midway into the season-opening Philippine Cup, a development that leaves Agustin a bit hesitant about their chances of going for a second straight championship.

“Right now, we’re not thinking of Philippine Cup. As I’ve said we lack a big man and a shooter without Jay-Wash and Joseph. So we’ll first concentrate on getting the players we need,” added Agustin, the 1992 PBA Most Valuable Player and adjudged as one of the 25 Greatest Players in PBA history.

The Petron coach is looking to address the team’s necessities through the Annual Draft slated this Sunday at the Robinsons Place Manila.

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