HE played with the team before and unless the opposition will play beyond their potential, reigning PBA D-League MVP Ian Sangalang sees NLEX as a cinch to win a fifth straight championship.
“Kaya nila mag-champion. Alam ko kaya nila. The way na maglaro sila, kumpleto na sila eh. Andun na si Greg (Slaughter). Yung laro nila talagang gusto mag-champion,” said the agile 6-foot-7 big man about his former squad.
Sangalang suited up for EA Regenerative Medicine Team Delta in the current Foundation Cup after being part of the Road Warriors’ champion team in the past.
“Depende sa lalaruin ng ibang teams,” Sangalang said of the possibility of dislodging the four-time reigning champions.
“Madisiplina kasi ang NLEX, tapos lahat pa gunner. Wala kang itatapon run,” he added. “Tapos may championship experience pa sila.”
Following the ouster of EA Regens in the playoffs, Sangalang can rejoin NLEX again as the league has a lenient ruling on player transfers, which according to tournament supervisor Eric Castro is patterned after the fantasy league format.
“Pwedeng magpalitan at magbaba ng players anytime dito sa D-League,” Castro stressed.
But Sangalang has made it clear he is no longer coming back to NLEX.
“Hindi na siguro ako lalaro dun. Nahihiya na rin ako sa management ng NLEX, kahit alam naman nila `yung tunay na dahilan,” explained Sangalang. ”Saka wala rin naman silang sinasabi na maglaro ako ulit.”
The former San Sebastian King Stag will just use his idle time to rest before his manager, Pampanga vice governor-elect Dennis Pineda, sends him to the US for a training camp.
“Ipapadala ako ni Vice (Pineda) sa LA. Gusto raw kasi niyang hasain pa ng todo `yung laro ko,” he said.
“Siguro preparation na niya ito para sa pagpapa-draft ko,” said Sangalang, who still has no clear decision on when he intends to join the PBA rookie pool.
With his height and effective medium range jumper, not a few believe Sangalang has the potential to become a dominant big man in the pro league.
This early scouts see Sangalang as a possible top three pick in the rookie draft along with NLEX ‘s Slaughter and Bobby Ray Parks Jr.