TAPPING Marcus Douthit as import makes perfect sense for Talk `N Text in the coming PBA Commissioner’s Cup owing to the naturalized player's familiarity with its system and some members of the team.
Team manager Aboy Castro bared for the first time the team’s need to have the 6-foot-10 Douthit as its reinforcement for the mid-season conference that begins on February 8.
“He’ll definitely be a big addition to the team dahil kilala na siya ng mga players. Some of the guys have played with him already so they are already familiar with Marcus,” Castro said, referring to Tropang Texters’ Jimmy Alapag, Kelly Williams, and Ranidel de Ocampo, who played with the American in the past as part of the Smart Gilas-Pilipinas team.
Air21, however, owns the playing rights on the 32-year-old Douthit since the Syracuse, New York–born slotman played for the Express during last season’s Commissioner’s Cup.
Still, Castro said Talk 'N Text still wants to clarify Douthit's status with Commissioner Chito Salud since the American landed at Air21 last season through a lottery among the teams.
“But we just have to find out what we need to do that’s why we will clarify also with the commissioner. Remember that Marcus became Air21’s import due to a very special agreement,” Castro said.
If and when Air21 decides to keep Douthit, Castro said the team has a short list of possible imports to choose from.
Still, Talk `N Text remains hopeful they can get Douthit on board for the import-laden tournament.
Douthit averaged 20.3 points and 20.3 rebounds in nine games for the Express during last year’s Commissioner’s Cup, although the team failed to get past the elimination round after finishing with a 3-6 (win-loss) record.
The naturalized player will be leaving for Dubai on Tuesday with the second edition of the Smart Gilas-Pilipinas team under coach Chot Reyes for the 24th Dubai International basketball tournament.