YUTIEN Andrada is keen on making the most of his campaign with Phoenix Petroleum in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup following a stint with Barako Bull in the last PBA Philippine Cup.
The former La Salle big man saw action for the first time with the Accelerators on Monday in their 85-80 win over Tanduay, finishing with two rebounds in five minutes of play in his Phoenix debut.
Selected 27th overall in last year’s Rookie Draft, Andrada saw limited action for Barako Bull during the all-Filipino conference, before being shipped to Phoenix in the D-League.
But Andrada is looking at the positive side of the move, seeing his stint with the Accelerators as an opportunity to hone his skills in preparation for another shot at the pro league.
“Marami naman ako natutunan (sa Barako Bull) pero siguro dahil di pa ako gaano nakakalaro, konting experience pa kailangan ko,” Andrada told Spin.ph on Monday.
“Siguro dagdag exposure din ito para sa akin para makabalik ako sa PBA,” he added.
Phoenix Petroleum coach Eric Gonzales believes Andrada is an asset to the team, giving the Accelerators an additional experienced big man to a young team whose core is mostly composed of players from reigning UAAP champion Far Eastern University.
“Kilala ko siya sa La Salle na (kapag offensive rebound), i-fifinish niya. Kanina baka naninibago, kuha na niya bola pero nadudulas. Pero sabi ko sa kanya, sige lang,” said the Phoenix coach.
“Hindi ako nagkamali sa kanya kasi sa practice, okay naman siya,” he added.
Andrada admitted he is still adjusting to the scheme of things of Phoenix, but confident he can contribute to its title hopes.
He also believes the Accelerators have what it takes to win the D-League crown behind the core of the Tamaraws - incidentally his former nemesis during his stint with La Salle in the UAAP.
“Medyo nag-aadjust pa kasi siguro matagal rin ako hindi nakakalaro. Kakaibang experience kasi kalaban ko sila nung college. Masaya naman ako sa Phoenix. Malakas ‘yung team at marami akong matututunan sa kanila,” said Andrada.