NEW kid on the block Global Port is keeping an open mind as far as trades are concerned, but would rather keep the solid core of scoring ace Gary David, point guard JV Casio, and possibly, last year’s Rookie of the Year Rabbah Al-Hussaini for the coming 38th season of the PBA.
Team manager BJ Manalo said the team is definitely looking to surround the trio of David, Casio, and Al-Hussaini a strong supporting cast that he’s not negating the possibility of trading away some of their current players.
The Batang Pier conducted their first team practice together Friday at the Moro Lorenzo gym in Katipunan under coach Glenn Capacio in what Manalo said is the start of a series of evaluations to determine the composition of the franchise.
The team manager said owner Mikee Romero wants Global Port to be competitive right away in their inaugural season in the league
“We all know boss Mikee. He doesn’t want to be associated with a losing team. He wants our team to be competitive, that is why we will make some evaluations in the coming days as we go deep into our practices,” Manalo related to Spin.ph.
Manalo, the former La Salle hotshot, however, denied reports that Casio is being dangled to one of the teams under the umbrella of San Miguel Corp., nor is Al-Hussaini being shipped to Talk `N Text for 6-foot-9 Japeth Aguilar and a reunion with Ateneo college coach Norman Black.
“Our team remains intact and we would want to build on a solid core that will challenge strong teams for the new season,” added Global Port’s young team executive.
Manalo also said that first round picks Vic Manuel and Fil-Am Jason Deutchman will definitely be given fat rookie deals.
At the moment, those who have live contracts with the team include outside of Casio, David, and Al-Hussaini are Fil-Am Josh Vanlandingham, Francis Allera, and veterans Romel Adducul, Alex Crisano, and Ricky Calimag.
David was a no-show in Global Port’s first official practice session as he is currently in Taipei as part of Smart Gilas-Pilipinas seeing action in the 34th William Jones Cup basketball tournament.
Casio meanwhile, is still on vacation in the US.