A new reinforcement is coming the way of beleaguered Barangay Ginebra starting this week.
But coach Alfrancis Chua would rather not get too excited at this point.
Chua plans to see first how incoming import Vernon Macklin performs in practice, and from there chart what course of action to take for the still winless Kings.
“Di pa namin siya (Macklin) nakikita. We’ll see kung ano kaya niya. From there we’ll plan,” said Chua in a talk with Spin.ph shortly after the Kings’ 90-105 loss to sister-team Petron, their third in as many games in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
Macklin is set to arrive in the country on Monday, and then join the Kings in practice for the first time on Tuesday.
The man who’s replacing Herbert Hill is coming over with solid credentials.
Macklin was picked 52nd overall by the Detroit Pistons in the 2011 NBA draft, and is noted for his hard-banging plays. His most recent stint came with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers in the NBA D-League.
He won’t play his first official game until Saturday when Barangay Ginebra takes on unbeaten Alaska in the league’s second road game of the conference in Tubod, Lanao del Norte.
Macklin’s entry comes at a time when the Kings need immediate help, being one of only two teams still to make the win column along with reigning champion San Mig Coffee.
Chua admitted the Kings were outplayed completely by the Boosters.
The outspoken Ginebra mentor was a picture of frustration throughout the game as the Kings simply had no one to match up against Petron’s energetic import Renaldo Balkman, who punished them for 34 points – including 17 in the third period - 10 rebounds, and two blocked shots.
Chua said Hill played lethargically early in the second half, forcing him to sit him out for the rest of the game.
“Our import didn’t play well that’s why I didn’t use him that much (in the second half),” Chua said following another long post-game talk with the coaching staff at the dugout.
“We tried to fight in the first two quarters, but in the third quarter they (Boosters) beat us. They are just simply stronger than us,” he added.