TWO slumping Asean Basketball League (ABL) teams tabbed the services of a Filipino veteran and two members of Ateneo's five-time UAAP men’s basketball champion team in a bid to turn their season around.
Al Vergara makes his ABL comeback after being signed up by the struggling Saigon Heat along with former Blue Eagle Oping Sumalinog, who recently played for the NLEX Road Warriors in the PBA D-League.
Another member of Ateneo’s champion team, Tonino Gonzaga, has also joined the league by hooking up with the Chang Thailand Slammers.
The Heat acquired Vergara and Sumalinog to replace ex-NLEX cager Karl Dehesa and Philip Morrison after the team’s recent slide which dropped them from second to fifth place with a 3-5 (win-loss) mark.
Gonzaga, originally set to play for D-League newcomer Jumbo Plastic prior to being signed up by Thailand, replaces Jonathan Fernandez in the lineup as the Slammers are currently occupying last spot in the six-team standings with a 3-7 slate.
Vergara, who is expected to form a formidable backcourt tandem with compatriot Jai Reyes, is no stranger to the league, having played for the Philippine Patriots last season and the Singapore Slingers previously.
Vergara last suited up for Globalport Batang Pier in the PBA.