BARANGAY Ginebra will miss its best big man when begins its PBA Commissioner’s Cup campaign on Friday night against NLEX at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Gin Kings, who had a rough start in their first conference under coach Tim Cone in the Philippine Cup, are without measles-stricken Greg Slaughter for possibly the first two games, starting with the Road Warriors at 7 p.m.
“Our immediate goal is to get off to a quicker start to the conference, but with Greg down with measles and possibly missing the first two games, we’ll be hard pressed to reach that goal,” Cone said in a text message to Spin.ph on the eve of their debut.
“Still, we have a lot of faith in our depth and the guys we have,” the Grand Slam mentor was quick to add. “We feel there is a good chance we won’t miss a beat.”
The Gin Kings, who barely missed a semifinal spot in the all-Filipino conference, are expected to lean heavily on import Othyus Jeffers and from the rest of their local crew led by LA Tenorio, Mark Caguioa, Japeth Aguilar, and Scottie Thompson.
“Just like everybody, we’re excited for the start of this conference,” Cone said.
The Road Warriors are also excited with the return of prolific reinforcement Al Thornton, who tries to lead the Boyet Fernandez-coached team in at least matching its fifth-place finish in the last Commissioner’s Cup.
GlobalPort and Mahindra face off in the curtain-raiser at 4:15 p.m.