ALEX Nuyles has silently worked his way into the Tropang TNT’s roster in the ongoing PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
The shooting guard out of Adamson was signed up by the Texters at the start of the mid-season conference upon finding out that he was relegated by Mahindra in the free agent list.
His deal with the telecommunication franchise runs until the end of the season.
The 25-year-old native of Calimag, Albay was simply happy for the chance to finally play again following his tumultuous stint with the Enforcers, with whom he got embroiled in a contract dispute that was only settled upon the intervention of commissioner Chito Narvasa.
“Nasuwertihan lang din,” he admitted. “At that point, give up na ako nung nasa Mahindra ako. I just prayed na sana magkaroon pa ng chance. Kaya nagpapasalamat ako sa TNT for giving me another opportunity.”
Although he was able to settle his issue with Mahindra management, the connection between player and the team was no longer the same. Nuyles never got to play for the Enforcers in the season-opening Philippine Cup.
Naturally, the confidence level of this former first round draft pick (9th overall by Rain or Shine) slipped.
“Sobra (down ang morale ko), dahil alam ko sa sarili ko na kaya kong mag-contribute dito sa liga,” he stressed. “Pero management’s decision yun kaya wala akong magagawa.”
But then came the call from TNT.
“It was Jong who decided to get him upon the recommendations of (assistant coach) Nash (Racela) and the other coaching staff because we’re looking for a back-up wingman,” recalled team manager Virgil Villavicencio.
“Nagkataon na free agent siya kaya kinuha na namin. But the consideration there is for him to settle whatever disagreements meron sila ng Mahindra. Maayos naman 'yung paalam niya kaya nandito na siya sa amin,” added the TNT official.
So far Nuyles has suited up in four of the team’s seven games, some of them he missed due to tendinitis.
“Nagkasunud-sunod yung aches and pains. Parang nabigla, kasi last conference nga hindi naman ako nakakapag-practice,” he said. “Kailangan talaga hindi dapat mamadaliin yung pagbalik sa dating form ko.”
Yet despite what happened, Nuyles said he still learned a lot in his short yet tumultuous stay with Mahindra, which landed him following a trade with Blackwater for Riel Cervantes in last year’s Commissioner’s Cup.
“In a way, may natutunan din naman ako nung nasa Mahindra pa tayo,” he stressed. “Ganun lang talaga siguro dito, tiyaga-tiyaga lang.”