STAR adds a new import, and possibly even more firepower, to its already potent local offense as it takes on Alaska in the PBA Governors’ Cup that goes on the road on Friday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.
The Hotshots are set to field Malcolm Hill in place of Cinmeon Bowers, who hardly impressed in his debut with only 15 points, eight rebounds, and five assists in 30 minutes in their 103-86 victory over Blackwater last Sunday
The Hotshots still blew the Elite out as four locals, led by PJ Simon, scored in double figures as they pounced on the late exit of Blackwater import Trevis Simpson due to a groin injury.
Now, Hill, a 21-year-old Illinois product, is set to make his pro debut and is expected to be better than Bowers as he starts to prove his worth against Buck Henton and the Aces at 7 p.m.
“We have a new import, so it’s also a factor in our chemistry,” Star coach Chito Victolero said on the eve of the matchup. “But as long as we play together and have proper mindset, I think we have a chance to win the game.”
The Hotshots, though, are wary against an Aces side that’s eager to put an end to a franchise-worst 10-game losing streak dating back to April, coming off another heartbreaking loss, a 95-93 decision at the hand of Phoenix last Saturday.
“We need to be sharp and focused for this game. We know Alaska will bounce back and try to do everything to win the game,” Victolero said. “We just need to match their intensity and desire.”
TNT KaTropa, the losing finalist in the Commissioner’s Cup, starts its bid to get over the hump as it makes its conference debut along with new import Michael Craig against winless Kia in the first game at 4:15 p.m.