FORMER Far Eastern University coach Nash Racela likes the improvements in the games of former Tamaraws Raymar Jose and Achie Iñigo after seeing the two in action for the Kaohsiung Truth in the ABL.
Last Wednesday, Racela flew to Hong Kong to watch Jose and Iñigo in action against the Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions and was left impressed with how the two have improved in the ABL season.
Although the two didn't put up huge numbers in the Truth's 103-83 loss to Hong Kong, the current TNT KaTropa mentor said Jose and Iñigo have learned to play like imports, being the Asean reinforcements of the Taiwanese side.
Racela said Jose has grown to adjust to the ABL style of play as well as the brand of officiating.
"Sa nakita ko last game, they've learned to play as imports. I remember the first game ni Raymar, foul trouble agad siya. This time, one foul lang siya. Natututunan na niya," Racela said.
"Because he has learned to do that, he has been playing more. 'Yun naman ang importante when you are an import, dapat nandoon ka sa court," said Racela.
As for Iñigo, Racela said he has developed his leadership skills being the main point guard of the Truth.
"Achie has been a court general for Kaohsiung. 'Yung leadership niya lumalabas," said Racela. "I want him to be more aggressive."
For his part, Iñigo said the gesture of Racela to take time from his PBA schedule with TNT boosted their confidence.
"Sobrang laki sa amin nun kasi nakita niya 'yung mga tama at mali naming ginagawa nung game. Nagbigay rin siya ng advice sa amin. Sobrang happy lang kami na nakapanood siya," said Iñigo.
The exposure his two former players are getting in the ABL, Racela hopes, will help them in their bid to play in the PBA.
"I think this is the step towards that direction (PBA). Hopefully, mag-improve sila lalo na si Achie because he is a free agent. Hopefuly, he gets a chance to play in the PBA," said Racela.