Barako Bull – they are just that unpredictable
August 19, 2013 by Sydrick Salazar
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It looks as if the current drama in the PBA at the moment is how Alaska coach Luigi Trillo reacted to the Allein Maliksi trade that gave Barako Bull Wesley Gonzales, Chris Pacana, and a 2017 second round draft selection.
Apparently all his whining was understandable until he brought the names of Celino Cruz and Gilbert Bulawan. Trillo stated that for the San Mig Coffee Mixers to have a “fair” trade, they should package the two mentioned names for James Yap.
The name drop caused Cruz’ wife to get infuriated with the coach’s demeaning tweets! Barako Bull Team Manager Raffy Casyao to go down to memory lane when Trillo was still a 0-24 coach for the Adamson Soaring Falcons and to stay out of his business! Even Josh Urbiztondo was not spared!
I want to say Trillo is bad person here – especially since he is the coach of the franchise that visibly turned their backs on the Gilas Pilipinas team (we have eyes that read and notice), but he is not. The Urbiztondo trade was a way for Ginebra to pad their backcourt with Keith Jensen as the sacrificial lamb. Before The Fireball, Fearless Ronald Tubid also got traded for seldom used players like Alex Mallari (who has since been traded to San Mig Coffee) and Jojo Duncil. Before that, San Miguel and Talk N Text have used Barako Bull (and their former genealogy, Air21) to get players like Arwind Santos, Alex Cabagnot, Rabeh Al-Hussaini, Nonoy Baclao, Rey Guevarra, Jay Washington, Macmac Cardona, Renren Ritualo, Yancy de Ocampo, Ranidel de Ocampo, and a whole lot of other players that came and went from either the Tropang Texters and the San Mig Corp trio.
And yeah… don’t get me started with the old Red Bull lineage that is now the Air21 Express that gave Enrico Villanueva, Junthy Valenzuela, Lordy Tugade, Larry Fonacier, and Mick Pennisi for virtually nothing.
How many second round picks does Barako Bull really need anyway?
But if there’s one silver lining, this team has at the moment… it’s that they have bite. With a beast of an import in Mike Singletary, Barako Bull’s combo of rookies and veterans are making things right for Rajko Toroman’s wards. The return of the combo that has the Fruitiest Name in ALL of basketball (Dorian Pena) and the… well… the Pornstar-ry Name in Philippine basketball (inasmuch as I want to say ALL, Mick Pennisi has to contend with Penny Hardaway and Magic Johnson). Pena and Pennisi are old warriors (they could be the PBA’s version of the Dudley Boyz) that could hurt an opposing squad at any given moment. And then there’s another set of old slashers and shooters like Danny Seigle, Mark Macapagal, Roger Yap, Celino Cruz, and not-so-old hands like Ronjay Buenafe and JC Intal that are eager to show off and get angry at the teams that used them as perennial trade baits.
And then there’s Emman Monfort. The guy has this photo circulating in the internet where he gets a photo op with his idol and current teammate Danny Seigle when he was just a kid.
Call him undersized but a flash in a pan he is not. He is the reason why Toroman and “coach” Bong Ramos never really had a problem letting Urbiztondo go. It’s the same feeling as to why the seldom used Doug Kramer had to be replaced by should-be used a lot Dorian Pena and the abundance of SG and SFs could be the kicker on the boot that Maliksi got.
I still don’t understand why they had to let go of Tubid though…
Anyway, Monfort’s 22-point explosion is a glimpse on what the San Miguel Corporation is going to do with the Barako Bull Energy Colas. He is on the verge of owning the point guard spot but his explosion is considered a “lucky” one because nothing really comes out from a late second round choice. As of this moment, Ato Agustin is the only second round draft pick to win the MVP honors and only a couple of them have won the Mythical Team distinction. I am not saying Barako Bull will continue to be “farm squad”, but people should understand that big teams are expected to hunt down their important players because of the contributions they can bring to their teams. If Monfort’s stock continues to surge, then expect the bigger teams to make a deal for him.
If people are against these trades (they will likely stop because I’m betting their sought after talents have already been “farmed” out) then a nice suggestion would be the publicized salary cap. And speaking of salary caps, I think for the sake of the fans the Commissioner’s Office should check out the transactions that will unfold in the 2013 PBA Draft. Especially after it… when the players that could be potential swapping targets because of the plays they can do (as rookies, their salaries are lesser than the best and the worst of vets). It is not as if the Commissioner’s Office is handling the situation poorly. Ever since Chito Salud’s administration came on board, superstars have been somewhat distributed evenly. The “six years” unrestricted free agency rule, the one where a team can’t trade back their former player they recently traded… and the trade revisions are good innovations to protect the integrity of a player’s career.
Until the next loophole.