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    ABL champions KL Dragons keen to take act to PBA D-League

    Apr 15, 2016
    Fil-Canadian Matthew Wright may have to go through the draft if the KL Dragons get the nod to play in the PBA D-League as a guest team. 

    THE Westports KL Dragons are not about to be contented with their recent Asean Basketball League (ABL) success.

    The reigning ABL champions are now looking to take their acts to the PBA D-League, where they hope to play as a guest team in the coming Foundation Cup by partnering with the Ever Bilena Group of Dioceldo Sy.

    The Dragons are handled by longtime Filipino mentor Ariel Vanguardia, who is also one of the deputies of coach Leo Isaac at Blackwater, the PBA franchise also owned by Sy.

    “We’re still seeking an audience with PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa about the possible inclusion of the KL Dragons in the next D-League tournament. I think it’s a sensible idea which we hope would be given consent by the commissioner,” said Sy.

    If ever, the team will carry the name Blu Star-KL Dragons, the detergent soap being among the brand products under the Ever Bilena Group.

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    The Dragons bagged their first ever ABL championship three weeks ago by defeating the Singapore Slingers in the decisive Game Five of the finals, 77-65.

    Vanguardia said with the exception of imports Reggie Johnson and Calvin Godfrey, the entire KL team will be included in the roster.

    He added the team is also looking to suit up Fil-Am Jason Brickman and Fil-Canadian Matthew Wright, but said the two may likely go through the draft if they are given the go-signal to play.

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    “We still have to check about the status of Matthew Wright and Jason Brickman, but the rest of the players will definitely be part of the team,” said Vanguardia, who’s been at the helm of the Dragons since 2011.

    Most of the KL Dragons players are from the Malaysian national team, according to Vanguardia, that the D-League stint – if ever – will also serve as part of the squad’s training and preparation for the 2017 Southeast Asian Games to be held in Kuala Lumpur.

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    “Exposure and training na rin ng team yun para sa SEA Games in 2017,” he said.

    Vanguardia however, brushed off reports he’ll be the one calling the shots for the Malaysian cage team in next year’s biennial meet.

    “Wala pa namang sinasabi, so I’m not expecting anything yet,” he said.

    The Gilas cadets of coach Tab Baldwin routed Malaysia, 100-48, in their SEA Games encounter in Singapore last year, where the Filipinos eventually won the gold.

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    Fil-Canadian Matthew Wright may have to go through the draft if the KL Dragons get the nod to play in the PBA D-League as a guest team. 
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