Fil-Am guards reboot
July 1, 2012 by Sydrick Salazar
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In a span of one year (or two since one of team allegedly signed a long term contract) Philippine fans could witness the best non-PBA rivalry since the time when Blu Detergent’s Asi Taulava and Tanduay Rhum’s Eric Menk ruled the PBL.
These guys are not big men though. Maybe I’ll confuse people with my analogy. But never was a rivalry so intense outside the PBA circles. I can tell people that this rivalry rivals that of The Rock and the Major Pain but when they climb to the PBA once their Filipino basketball residency has made them eligible, expect these two to be the new age version of Jimmy Alapag against Jayjay Helterbrand.
What’s nice about the players that I picked is that all of these guys are PBA MVPs.
San Miguel Beermen dynamo Chris Banchero is a 6’1 point guard from Seattle Pacific meanwhile Indonesia Warriors’ Stanley Pringle is also 6’1 and also plays the same position for Penn State. In the ASEAN Basketball League, both men can play both guard positions and both guys were midseason acquisitions. Banchero arrived to the scene after his documents came into place. However, Pringle and Banchero can’t suit up for the Beermen which is why Pringle signed with the Indonesia Warriors. Pringle joined two other Filipinos in Allan Salangsang and should-be top rookie prospect Jerick Canada leaving Indonesia to release former PBA player Mark Magsumbol.
Pringle’s 28 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals were enough to choke out the Beermen in our home turf, 78 to 76. In the regular season, Pringle averaged 6.2 assists per game but those numbers deteriorated as he took on a more offensive kind of mentality. Banchero on the other hand scored 16 points, 5 rebounds, 8 assists, and 2 steals and was 7-of-12 from the field to a cause that was for San Miguel to take… if they can finish out the game.
I guess if there’s one thing different about these two is that Pringle is more of a combo guard than Banchero. Pringle can shift gears from being a super charged playmaker to a equally-powered scorer. But how ironic is this because Banchero can multitask playmaking with scoring. The only qualm I have in Banchero’s game is that while I’m comparing him with Alapag, he needs to improve his range. Pringle meanwhile is a never say die performer that needs to cut down his turnovers.
I guess San Miguel needs to field in a PBA D-League squad. I think it’s time for the team to test the D-League and to further own Banchero and Pringle. Their ABL version is nice and all for their practice players and free agents but for their kids, most especially their rookie bigs like Junmar Fajardo, they need to give them an avenue where their star player capabilities won’t be contained. After all, San Miguel has partnered with the DLSU Green Archers and Gee Abanilla might find the D-League a nice way to hone LA Revilla, Norbert Torres, Arnold Vosotros, Yutien Andrada, Sam Marata, Joshua Webb, and Jeron Teng.
Even if both players are San Miguel discoveries, I don’t think both players can play for one squad. Maybe B-Meg can finally have the starting point guard they want while Ginebra can finally have their heir apparent to Helterbrand.
No question though, I am pretty psyched on what these two can do for the future of Philippine basketball.
The people of the 90’s are dwindling and the people beyond 2005 are considered in or past their primes so I guess with the Smart-Gilas kids and the new bunch of Fil-Ams, now is the right to refresh the rosters.