WHILE he may be on the other side of the fence, Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao believes the decision of Barangay Ginebra to bring in returning import Gabe Freeman is a `good move’ on the part of the team.
The arrival of Freeman according to Guiao, should work well for the team’s talent-stacked roster, especially to the Kings’ two big men Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar.
“The reason they got Gabe is because their Twin Towers (Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar) will get the spacing needed,” Guiao told Spin.ph.
Freeman, who was officially listed at 6-5 and 3/16 at the PBA office, played a total of 60 games in a span of three conferences from 2009 to 2012, averaging 22.1 points, 16.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.2 steals during his stints with San Miguel Beer and Barako Bull.
Known for his athleticism, Guiao said that alone, plus Freeman’s familiarity with the PBA brand of play can easily work well to Ginebra’s advantage.
Freeman, who owns a PBA career-average of 51.1 percent, can score inside and outside, providing a sure scoring threat for a Ginebra squad that struggled during the single-round eliminations of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
“Gabe Freeman can attract attention on defense while providing drop passes to their (Kings) big men. So for me, getting Gabe is a good choice on the part of Ginebra,” added Guiao on the eve of the Elasto Painters’ game against the Kings.
The fiery Rain or Shine mentor said given Ginebra’s solid roster of scorers from the wing down to the backcourt, Freeman can have the field day of setting up his local teammates anytime.
“He can draw the defense and give other guys like Mark Caguioa, LA Tenorio, Chris Ellis and Mac Baracael the good look to the basket,” explained Guiao.
“That to me, is a good move for Ginebra. Saka si Gabe naman alam na niya ang laro ng PBA,” he added.
A win by Rain or Shine, coupled by Alaska’s victory over San Mig in the first game on Easter Sunday will give the Elasto Painters the no. 4 seed in the playoffs and meet the Meralco Bolts in a best-of-three quarterfinal series.
But should Ginebra come out with the winner, the Kings will be seeded sixth and face either Alaska or Meralco in a best-of-three quarterfinal affair