BLACKWATER is bent on tapping former two-time NCAA champion Romel Adducul to become part of its coaching staff, specifically to take charge of the team’s big men.
Team management already had talks with the 42-year-old 6-foot-6 Adducul, once one of the country’s dominant big men especially in the amateurs, whose signature is the only left missing for the position to be formalized.
Adducul has agreed in principle to the offer, according to team owner Dioceldo Sy.
“We’re just waiting for him to come back here, I think he’s out of the country or out of town yata,” said Sy during the PBA Press Corps Christmas party which he attended along with PBA Board chairman Ricky Vargas, Blackwater alternate governor Ariel Vanguardia and Cignal executives Sienna Olaso and Miguel Vea.
“Hopefully, we can have the formal signing after the holidays. Huwag lang magbago ang isip niya.”
As Blackwater’s big man coach, Adducul will work with the Elite’s young core of frontcourt players led by Mac Belo, Raymar Jose, and rookie Abu Tratter should the team’s trade with NLEX is approved by the PBA Commissioner’s Office.
Blackwater is following San Miguel's move of tapping former two-time league MVP Danny Ildefonso to mentor June Mar Fajardo during the Cebuano's rookie season with San Miguel.
The 6-foot-11 Fajardo has since developed into one of the most dominant big men in PBA history, winning the MVP plum the last four seasons – the only player thus far to achieve the feat in the last 43 years.
Ildefonso is now an assistant coach at Alaska, where he’s also doing wonders developing the team’s big men of Vic Manuel and Kevin Racal.
“Wala namang mawawala if we try, di ba,” said Sy of Blackwater’s move to hire the services of Adducul. “We’re confident of the help he can contribute in helping mould our big men.”
Adducul does have the credentials.
The Tuguegarao, Cagayan native was the anchor in the middle when San Sebastian reigned the NCAA as men’s basketball champions five straight seasons, from 1993 to 1997, and won two MVP awards in the process.
He didn't have the same impact in the pro ranks after repeatedly deferring his entry in the PBA, where he was picked second overall by Barangay Ginebra in the 2003 rookie draft, six years after winning his last championship with the Stags.
Still, Adducul was good enough to win three championships, twice with the Kings and once with the Purefoods franchise.
A four-time All-Star, he made it to the league’s second Mythical Team in 2004-05.
He finally retired in 2013 after playing one season with Globalport
Adducul now serves as assistant to college teammate Topex Robinson at Lyceum.