Photo credit: Potamanya
GOOD news for Alaska, a bad one for Phoenix.
The Aces are bringing back champion import Diamon Simpson in lieu of Antonio Campbell going to their crucial PBA Commissioner’s Cup encounter against the Fuel Masters on Friday.
Simpson arrived in the country Friday and will be suiting up for the 7 p.m. game at the Astrodome in his first stint with the Aces since steering them to the 2010 Fiesta Cup championship.
“Yes, he’s in pretty much shape since he just came from a league in Turkey,” said Alaska team manager Dickie Bachmann.
Alaska management said Campbell opted out of his contract with the Aces as he’s set to play in the coming NBA Summer League.
"We're not one to hinder him from playing in the Summer League so we just decided to let him go," said Bachmann.
The import change came as Alaska suffered back-to-back losses - including a 105-86 rout against Barangay Ginebra the last time - and fell at 7-3 for a tie with TnT Katropa for second place in the heated battle for the remaining twice-to-beat advantage heading into the quarterfinals.
The Aces hope to win over the Fuel Masters in order to avoid complications for the no. 2 seed in the playoffs.
But Phoenix (4-6) is likewise looking for a win in a bid to at least forge a playoff for the no. 8 and last quarterfinals berth.
It wouldn't be easy, according to Fuel Masters coach Louie Alas with Simpson coming on board for Alaska.
"Medyo humirap. Beterano at magaling yun," he said of the 30-year-old Simpson.