WITH the luxury of a deep backcourt, Meralco took the chance to boost its frontcourt.
Bolts coach Norman Black underlined his team’s shallow combo forward rotation as the reason behind trading for Mac Belo in exchange for Baser Amer and Bryan Faundo to Blackwater in a revised deal the PBA approved on Thursday.
“We recruited Mac Belo because our frontcourt is one of the areas where we need depth,” Black said. “We welcome him to the team and look forward to seeing his impact in our team.”
Among their frontline players, only Cliff Hodge is versatile enough to play both forward spots, and sometimes an emergency center when the Bolts go small ball.
And after seeing the rapid growth of young playmakers in newly minted Outstanding Rookie Aaron Black and Trevis Jackson, the Bolts could afford to give up their star point guard in Amer alongside a veteran big man in Faundo.
“To gain something of value, you unfortunately must lose something of value as well,” Black said. “We thank Baser and Bryan, and we recognize all of their contributions. We wish them nothing but the best in their career.”
Belo, who turns 28 on February 12, is expected to be a fixture in the Bolts’ starting lineup, where Black could take Amer’s place alongside cornerstone Chris Newsome, Raymond Almazan, and Bong Quinto.