AFTER bouncing from one team to another over the past 13 months, high-scoring guard Sol Mercado hopes that the team he has long dreamed of playing for will finally be his home.
A few days after he was surprisingly traded by GlobalPort for Alex Cabagnot in a seven-man, four-team trade, Mercado bared to Spin.ph how he had longed to play for the fabled San Miguel Beermen - the oldest and most successful ballclub in PBA history.
They Said It!
“I’ve been with teams where I put up numbers and stats, all of those stuff don’t matter to me now. All I want is to win and help my teammates win a championship." Incoming San Miguel Beermen guard Sol Mercado
“Even before I came out here in the Philippines, guys were telling me about San Miguel. They say it has a rich tradition and it’ll be an honor to play for them … and now I am close to it,” said the Fil-Latino dribbler.
With the latest reshuffle that saw the arrival of Mercado and Rico Maierhofer as well as Biboy Ravanes and Todd Purves now tasked to chart the team's course, Mercado is hopeful he will finally land his first championship in six years in the pro league.
“Yeah, I think, hopefully we can pull it together. Hopefully this time we will work,” he said.
To show how much he wants to fit in and make his mark with San Miguel Corp.'s flagship franchise, Mercado vowed to do whatever Purves and Ravanes asked of him.
His goal, Mercado said, is to be the "ultimate team player' at San Miguel.
“I just want to contribute to the team, whatever way the coach will ask of me. I don’t see myself being the star here. I want to be the ultimate team player and role player and give my all,” he said.
“I’ve been with teams where I put up numbers and stats, all of those stuff don’t matter to me now. All I want is to win and help my teammates win a championship,” he added.
“Every game, I will always play hard and give my all. Whatever it is, I am always gonna give my one hundred percent. Everybody knows how I hate losing,” Mercado reiterated.
Asked if his reunion with good pal and former Meralco teammate Chris Ross will be as successful as the former San Miguel backcourt pair of Hector Calma and Ricky Brown, Mercado said he certainly hope so.
“We have to put in the work, it would be nice to be able to help the team and win a championship and leave a legacy to add to the organization,” he said.
And will San Miguel be his final home?
“I am definitely praying for that!”