NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez believes the Road Warriors have found their own version of Calvin Abueva.
The undersized Alaska forward has been standing tall for the Aces and has long given not just the Road Warriors, but the rest the league headaches owing to his athleticism and boundless energy that translate to statistics across the board as well as numbers not seen in the stats sheet.
And Fernandez feels he now has a ward who offers the same skill set as Abueva in rookie Glenn Khobuntin.
“That’s what we want to him do,” Fernandez said in a chat with Spin.ph, referring to this year’s 10th pick overall in the PBA draft who became known for his energy and athleticism with National University in the UAAP, in the D-League, and with the Gilas cadet squad in international tournaments.
Like a good soldier, Khobuntin is heeding his coach’s call and is continuing to pattern his game after that of the Aces star.
“Yung aggressiveness niya sa defense and offense, masarap gayahin,” Khobuntin said of Abueva, whose stellar play has earned him a Gilas Pilipinas call-up. “Grabe yung energy niya.”
Fernandez is all praises for the 6-foot-2 combo forward, who is expected to make an immediate impact with the team along with sixth pick Garvo Lanete.
“We now have a wing who can match up with Calvin,” Fernandez said of Khobuntin, one of four NLEX rookie signings. “We really had a tough time matching up with Calvin, so getting Khobuntin, I think he has the same strength as him.”
Khobuntin, who is from Cagayan de Oro and turned 24 last September 7, said he wants to focus on defense and the Road Warriors’ running game as he tries to fit in with the team’s veterans.
“Gawin mo lang yung san ka malakas, yung strength mo, pakita mo lang sa kanila,” Khobuntin said. “Kasi mga beterano na yan sila eh. Hindi dapat sila yung mag-aadjust sayo.”