MARQUS Blakely is set to return to Purefoods Star on Tuesday - not as the Hotshots’ import for the PBA Commissioner's Cup but as a practice player.
Blakely is flying back from the United States after obtaining a medical opinion on his left shoulder, which he injured while playing as the Hotshots’ temporary import in the midseason conference.
Purefoods governor Rene Pardo said after undergoing several tests and getting medical opinion from US specialists, the 6-4 import was told that no surgery was needed and he can play through the injury.
“Parating na siya (Blakely) sa March 3. Dito na namin siya ipapag-rehab kasi di naman daw kailangan ng surgery,” Pardo told Spin.ph on Saturday.
Pardo added the the former PBA Best Import awardee can also help the Hotshots and current import Denzel Bowles with his mere presence and the energy he provides during practice.
“Puwede rin siyang sumama sa ensayo. Bigigyan na lang natin siya ng allowance,” added the Hotshots’ amiable team executive.
Purefoods Star is currently tied for fifth to eighth spots with GlobalPort, Barangay Ginebra Kings and Barako Bull Energy on similar 4-3 win-loss records.
The Hotshots started the midseason conference with a 4-0 record, three of them with Blakely and one more under mercurial import Daniel Orton, who was since sent home after a controversial post-game rant against KIA playing-coach Manny Pacquiao and league referees.
The defending champions are out to arrest a three-game losing slide when they go up against San Miguel Beer on Sunday in a battle between two struggling teams.