THE arrival of Gabby Espinas and Paolo Taha at the GlobalPort camp isn't considered a future-altering event.
But Pido Jarencio begs to differ.
“Si Paolo Taha, 'yung konting kumpiyansa darating 'yan. And then si Gabby Espinas naman, masyadong matalinong maglaro kasi beterano na,” Jarencio said after a 133-115 rout of Columbian in the two's first game with the Batang Pier on Friday.
With only one practice under their belt, Espinas and Taha were both immediately thrown in at the deep end by Jarencio, playing 19 and 24 minutes, respectively. They combined for eight points, nine rebounds, three assists, and two blocks in the rout.
Aside from the numbers, Jarencio should also love the fact that the two come from teams with rich championship traditions - and therefore can be of big help in cultivating a winning culture at GlobalPort.
“Yung winning attitude lang na galing akong sa team na laging panalo, yun lang siguro yung maibibigay ko ... na hindi kami nagpa-practice para matalo at hindi kami nagpupunta ng game para matalo kundi para manalo,” said Espinas, who came from San Miguel in a one-on-one trade for Kelly Nabong.
Taha, who was acquired from Ginebra in exchange for Julian Sargent, also hopes to translate into good games all that he learned during his time with the Gin Kings.
“Malaking bagay yung mga natutunan ko sa Ginebra dahil championship team kami. Playing under coach Tim (Cone), lalo na kila kuya LA (Tenorio), kuya Mark (Caguioa), at kuya Jayjay (Helterbrand) dati, sobrang dami kong natutunan,” he said.
“Malaking bagay na naging teammates ko sila. Natuto ako maging aggressive sa Ginebra at kung ano yung tamang mindset.”
Armed with a better understanding of the game from the perspective of title contenders, the two new acqusitions are just as motivated to help lead GlobalPort to the playoffs.
“Galing ako sa team na palaging panalo, di ba? Kaya kung kaya ko makatulong para makaabot sa playoffs, why not? May tiwala naman ako sa mga teammates ko kaya siguro aabot kami,” said Espinas.
Taha added: “Nandito ako to give my best para makatulong ako sa team at kay coach Pido.”