IS Dave Marcelo the next big man project of coach Yeng Guiao?
The 29-year-old center-forward sure hopes so.
In the tradition of a Beau Belga, JR Quinahan, and of late, Michael Miranda, Marcelo looks forward to becoming even better now that he’s playing for one of the PBA's most respected coaches.
Miranda was acquired by the Road Warriors in a straight trade with Blackwater for Rabeh Al-Hussaini, putting him under the tutelage of a veteran coach who has turned unheralded players into stars.
At NLEX, Marcelo gets to team up with Quinahan and Miranda, who Guiao developed into the players that they are today. Guiao’s association with Quinahan dates back to their days with Rain or Shine.
Marcelo said he has a long way to go before he gets the full trust of his coach.
“Maraming pang room for improvement kasi si coach Yeng hahayaan ka niyang maglaro, bibigyan ka niya ng playing time, basta gawin mo lang yung trabaho mo especially on the defensive end,” said the 6-foot-5 product of San Beda.
“Kung kailangan ng team ng defense, kailangan mag effort ka, kasi yung opensa naman darating daw yan."
In his two games so far with his new team, the Road Warriors are 1-1 with Marcelo averaging 4.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 10 minutes of play.
Prior to his trade with NLEX, Spin.ph learned Phoenix was very interested in getting Marcelo’s trade only for the deal with Blackwater to fall through.
Now he’ll try to make the most of the opportunity to be handled by a coach of Guiao’s caliber.
“Binibigyan ka niya ng kumpiyansa,” he said of the champion coach. “Tsaka sa practice may training skills kami na sinasabihan kami na pag libre ka, itira mo.”
This early, Marcelo also got a taste of Guiao’s infamous temper.
“Kasi pag open ka at hindi mo tinira, doon siya nagagalit,” he recalled.
Marcelo gets to play another of his former teams in Barangay Ginebra when the Road Warriors play the Kings this Saturday as the Commissioner’s Cup goes to the Ibalong Centrum for Recreation in Legazpi City.
NLEX (2-5) is just a notch higher than Ginebra (1-5) in the standings.