GABE Freeman has vowed to fill the void left by Renaldo Balkman at Petron.
Speaking to Spin.ph after joining the Boosters in practice on Sunday, Freeman believes he plays very much like Balkman and has what it takes to approximate the banned import's success with the Boosters.
“Me and Renaldo are similar players, somewhat, this (hustle play) is what I was known for at Petron. I think we both can do great things,” said Freeman.
Balkman led the San Miguel Corp.-owned franchise to five wins before being banned from the league after an attack on teammates.
Freeman said he's capable of achieving the same success while coming in as a stand-in import until Petron finds a permanent replacement for the ineffective Rodney White.
“I want to fill that void and try to get this team to the championship or, atleast, I want to win them games while they are on my clock or I am on their clock ... I will try to win two games,” the well-traveled cager added.
[Listen to the full interview here]
Freeman, currently on the injured list of ABL squad San Miguel, has twice played for the SMC franchise before, leading it to the 2009 Fiesta conference championship before losing to the Diamon Simpson-led Alaska Aces in the Beermen's title defense the following year.
The former Albany Patroons standout said he will never try to steal the limelight from Petron scorers, stressing that he can play whatever role the coaching staff wants him to do.
“I may not be the greatest player, but I can be the greatest role player for this team,” said Freeman. “They need some energy and they need a guy who can come in and not just take shots, but just clean up the dirty work and run the floor."
The 6-6 slasher said the Boosters' locals have enough firepower to win games.
“Petron doesn’t need a scorer, they need somebody who’s gonna be there on the defensive end, take control of the defensive rebounds and give this team other opportunities,” said Freeman.
“I’m not looking to score 25 and 30 points, I’m just try to give when I can … If I can go on and score 15 points and 20 boards … I’ve done my job for the night,” he added.