SHAWN Taggart likes his chances of winning a championship more with Rain or Shine now in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup than when he was with Globalport last season.
Not that he had an unpleasant experience with the Batang Pier in a brief stint with the team in this same tournament a year ago. It just so happened, the 31-year-old import believes he has a better chance of winning a first-ever league title with the defending champion Elasto Painters.
It likewise helped that unlike with Globalport, where he came in as a replacement for Calvin Warner, he’ll be starting the conference with Rain or Shine after arriving in the country as early as two weeks ago.
“I was here two weeks before (the season). Last season, I was just going to the woods,” said Taggart, who had 23 points, 10 rebounds, and four assists in the team’s 113-105 win over NLEX to start its title defense on a high note on Friday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Taggart, a member of the Memphis Tigers side which lost to the Kansas Jayhawks in the 2008 U.S. NCAA National Championship, also pointed out injuries to key players hampered his short stint with Globalport.
“Stanley (Pringle) was hurt, Terrence (Romeo) was hurt, so it was a lot of scoring that I had to do,” he said.
Certainly, not in the case of Rain or Shine, where Taggart believes he has a lot of offensive options to lean on.
“Everybody is a team player, no one cares who scores,” said the native of Richmond, Virginia. “No one cares who shoots the ball or not."
“This time around I can still score,” added Taggart, who had 21 points in the first three quarters before letting the locals take over down the stretch – especially superstar James Yap and Raymond Almazan, who combined for 22 of the Elasto Painters’ 33 points in the final period.
“I actually can play with the ball, and even without the ball. So I feel like it’s a great fit for both of us.”