PETRON'S bid to sign Henry Sims hit a road bump on Monday when the coaching staff of his NBA D-League team asked the former Georgetown Hoya to stay on at least until the end of the regular season.
Sims is being eyed to replace the ineffective Rodney White at Petron, which had agreed to buy out the 6-foot-10 center's contract with the Erie BayHawks so he could plane in as soon as possible.
However, the process took a lot longer than expected as the bank holiday during the Lenten break has kept Petron officials from wiring the buyout money immediately to the US.
Now another hitch cropped up when news reaching Petron said the BayHawks have asked Sims to stay on as they make a run at a place in the D-League playoffs.
The BayHawks have a shot at a playoff spot, being just half a game behind eight-running Maine Red Claws with three more games left in their regular-season campaign.
“Okay na yan nung isang linggo eh, kaso ang latest information sa amin, mukhang pinipigilan daw ng coach. Pinapaki-usapan kasi crucial stretch na yung D-League,” said a Petron insider.
Sims is averaging 16.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.5 blocks per game as the starting center for the BayHawks this season.
Petron, at least, has a back-up plan.
Gabe Freeman has started practicing with the Boosters on Easter Sunday and is being lined up to play matches against Meralco on Friday and Barako Bull on Sunday until a permanent replacement comes in.