BLACKWATER has been good to him and his family the past four years that Mac Belo was more than fulfilled playing for the franchise.
Even with limited playoff appearances, Big Mac never ever thought about asking the team to trade him.
And so he was left speechless the moment he was told a trade proposal has been consummated between Blackwater and Meralco involving him and Baser Amer.
“Hindi ko alam kung ano ang magiging reaction ko kasi first time ko (ma-trade),” disclosed Belo on Saturday in the Power&Play program of former PBA Commissioner Noli Eala over Radyo5 NewsFM.
“Hindi ko sinabi (sa kanila na i-trade ako),” he added. “Malaking tulong sa akin at sa pamilya ko ang Blackwater kasi sila ang nag-draft sa akin, kaya gusto ko sana matulungan pa yung franchise na umangat.”
The trade, originally a straight Belo-Amer swap, had been approved by the PBA Commissioner's Office, with veteran big man Bryan Faundo added by Meralco to the package.
The consummate pro that he is, life goes on for the 27-year-old Belo, a native of Midsayap, Cotabato.
He feels grateful that there are still teams interested in his services especially with the current global health pandemic.
“Inisip ko na lang na part ng PBA life ito,” said the former King Tamaraw of Far Eastern University, who still participated in Blackwater’s group workouts just hours before being told about the trade.
“Thankful pa rin kasi blessing pa rin sa akin ito as a pro. Nagpapasalamat ka pa rin dahil may trabaho pa ako.”
Also a motivation is playing for a team that is slowly rising as a legitimate contender especially in the centerpiece Philippine Cup.
Belo, who was selected by Blackwater first overall in the 2016 special draft, had only been to the playoffs thrice in his four seasons with Blackwater.
Now he’s looking forward of doing it on a regular basis with the Bolts, who are just fresh from their first-ever semifinals stint in the all-Filipino conference during the bubble season last year.
“Hindi ko pa na-experience yung talagang maglaro sa semis at finals, kasi doon mo nasho-showcase yung talent mo under pressure. At gusto kong maging part ng ganun with Meralco,” said Belo.
“Gusto kong makilala as a winner. Dream ko talaga for now is makapag-champion sa PBA kasi four years na rin ako dito,” he added. “Lahat naman ng pro ang gusto mag-champion. And with Meralco, malaki yung chances ko na makamit yung pangarap kong yun.”
The 6-foot-4 Belo nonetheless, expressed his gratitude to Blackwater owner Dioceldo Sy, board of governor Siliman Sy, and team manager Jacob Munez for taking care of him in the four years he stayed at Blackwater, which saw him averaged 11.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.9 assists per game.