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    After sticking to role at SMB, Sol Mercado glad to be back on attack mode for Barako Bull

    Jan 28, 2015

    SOLOMON Mercado admitted it felt good to be back on attack mode for Barako Bull after holding himself back and trying to fit into a defensive role during his brief stay with San Miguel Beer.

    Like a beast unleashed, the six-foot guard was back to his high-scoring ways against Blackwater as he led a second-half surge that put away a 92-70 win for the Energy in their PBA Commissioner's Cup debut.

    The Fil-Am guard finished with 20 points, three rebounds and three assists - well above career-low numbers of 6.4 points, 2.9 rebounds and 2.6 assists he posted for San Miguel Beer in the last Philippine Cup.

    “I only had a couple of practices, so  probably the biggest adjustment was my condition," said Mercado, who was sent by the Beermen to GlobalPort in a straight swap for Alex Cabagnot before ending up at Barako in another trade for Denok Miranda.

    "Plus I haven’t had to play that style (run-and-gun) of basketball for about a year with San Miguel,” Mercado added.

    The former Biola University standout accepted criticism for his 'passive game' with the Beermen, but explained that he was asked to stick to a role in an SMB team filled with scoring options.

    “Every team I’ve been on, they wanted me to score except San Miguel because when I was on there, I don’t need to score really,” explained the 30-year-old combo guard.

    "And I agree with the coaches and management since with Arwind (Santos) and June Mar (Fajardo), they needed a point guard who plays defense," Mercado added.

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    At Barako Bull, Mercado intends to be back as the take-charge guy coach Koy Banal wanted him to be, hopeful that he can help the Energy earn a playoff spot in the mid-season conference.

    “I’m just going back to having fun and enjoy the game. And I might be moved again, we’ll never know, that’s part of the job description, but I’ll just go and play hard as much as I can and get the wins,” he said.

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