ALARMED by the way Globalport’s campaign has spiraled in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup, no less than team owner Mikee Romero has hinted that a change of import is in order for the ballclub.
After an encouraging start to the conference with Justin Williams, the Batang Pier have slipped to the lower half of the standings with a 2-3 (win-loss) slate after suffering back-to-back losses in just a week’s span.
Making things worse, two of their three losses, including a 90-89 heartbreaker against Meralco last Sunday, came in games where the Sultan 900 Incorporated franchise collapsed miserably in the endgame.
Making no effort to express his displeasure over Williams' performance, Romero said an import who could take charge in pressure situations could have bailed the Batang Pier out of trouble in those games.
“Di ako happy sa import. Tignan ko, pero magpapalit kami,” the youthful team owner revealed to Spin.ph in a message sent late Tuesday night.
“Mahina eh, kulang sa opensa.”
After exploding for 23 points, 23 rebounds, and eight blocked shots in Globalport’s 89-80 win over Barangay Ginebra, Williams’ numbers suddenly dipped.
His output against the Bolts was a new low among the imports this conference as he tallied only five points to go with 13 rebounds, eight blocks, and an assist.
Globalport head of basketball operations Erick Arejola told Spin.ph the team is carefully evaluating videos of possible prospects, but made it clear that “the team has not yet decided on (a change).”
Arejola hopes a final decision can be made at least until the weekend, which means the Batang Pier might still parade Williams in their road game against defending champion San Mig Coffee Mixers in Naga this Saturday.
Globalport star Gary David has mixed emotions about the looming import switch.
Speaking after the Batang Pier’s morning practice on Wednesday, the 34-year-old hotshot expressed surprise when Spin.ph informed him about the likely change.
“Para sa akin, may sakit si Justin noong nakaraang game (against Meralco). Pero siyempre management’s decision yan. Sila naman nakakaalam,” said David.
“Siyempre may nakikita siguro si Boss Mikee na kulang, siya ang nakakaramdam kung hanggang saan kami dadalhin nung import namin,” added the Gilas Pilipinas stalwart.
But at the same time, David stressed that in an import-laced conference, a team's reinforcement should serve as the go-to guy especially down the stretch - something which Williams is not.
“Kailangan talaga siya 'yung may threat, siya yung gumagawa ng sitwasyon para ma-open yung locals, hindi yung locals ang tutulong sa import,” David said.
“Si Justin kasi role player siya, depensa, rebound, tapos scoring niya hindi ganun ka-explosive. Kulang na lang kay Justin yung offensive threat niya eh, para ma-open up sa depensa yung mga local scorers.”