IT’S a reality Ed Daquioag has to learn early in his pro career: Loyalty is scarce in a business like the PBA.
In as much as he wants to be devoted to Meralco, the team that took a chance on him during the last special draft among Gilas cadets, Daquioag now has to shift his commitment to Rain or Shine after being dealt in a one-on-one trade with fellow rookie Mike Tolomia last week.
“Kung ako gusto ko kung ano yun (team) na nag-draft sa akin, gusto ko magtagal doon,” he said on Sunday after playing his first game for the Elasto Painters in a 94-86 win over KIA Picanto in the Governors Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“Kumbaga yun ang nag pick sa akin kaya yung loyalty ko nandoon.”
But just as he learned the hard way, no player – not even the superstars – is indispensable. So the freshman guard out of University of Santo Tomas can do nothing but to accept reality.
“Pero ganyan naman ang buhay naming mga basketball players. Hindi mo alam. Accept na lang and move on na lang.”
That’s what he did in his first outing as an Elasto Painter, contributing eight points in 10 minutes of play and going a perfect 3-of-3 from the field that helped the team end its two-game skid.
Daquioag said the warm welcome he received from his new team somewhat eased the emotional damage brought about by that stunning trade.
“Ok naman ako (adjustment). Tsaka si coach Caloy, cool naman yan, nabibiro-biro mo,” he said of Rain or Shine mentor Caloy Garcia. “Basta sabi niya lang, ready ako lagi.”