BARANGAY Ginebra coach Tim Cone can’t help but get excited about the potential depth of his team once Jeff Chan, Art Dela Cruz, and Jared Dillinger return from their injuries.
Cone said he can't wait to see the injured players get healthy and join the core that now includes Stanley Pringle, who was recently acquired in a trade from NorthPort.
“I keep looking at the bench, behind the bench, and I see Jeff Chan, I see Art Dela Cruz, I see Jared Dillinger. My mouth waters thinking, ‘Wow, wait ‘till we get those guys back’,” said Cone after their victory over Alaska on Sunday.
Cone, however, said there is still no timetable for the return of Chan, Dela Cruz, and Dillinger.
Chan is nursing an ankle sprain he suffered when he landed awkwardly on Blackwater big man James Sena’s foot after taking a three-point shot. Dela Cruz has a groin injury, while Dillinger has yet to recover from a quad injury he sustained during his time with Meralco.
“It is still up in the air. Art, I was told, might practice at the end of this week which will not make him available for our next game against Magnolia. Jeff had a PRP [Platelet-rich Plasma therapy] a couple of days ago and I hope he responds to that and maybe he can get back in practice but I’m not sure either.”
“Jared is still a couple of weeks away from being able to start practicing. Hopefully, we get some good news from these guys,” said Cone.
Cone said having the three on board will give him the luxury of resting top guys like Pringle and import Justin Brownlee.
“People, I don’t think, make a big deal out of the three guys. But those three are impact players that will come in. Imagine being able to keep Stanley, LA (Tenorio) and Justin fresh throughout the game with those guys playing.
"We feel that we have a bright future. We just got to go out and seize it. It’s not going to be easy. We are going to work hard at it every night. Every night, it’s going to be hardwork.
“In the meantime, we will play with who we have, we feel we have, and what we need. Those guys are an incredible bonus for us if they can trickle into our lineup,” Cone said.