In a previous blog I wrote that Tim Cone, the new coach of the Ginebra Gin Kings, will most probably revamp the team.
In the formal announcement to the press of his appointment, Tim said the team is imbalanced, citing the number of point guards.
I foresee Jay Jay Helterbrand being retired and Sol Mercado being traded for a younger guy one or two years out of the UAAP or NCAA ranks, the likes of RR Garcia. Sol is a run-and-gun player and he seems to prefer to play that way regardless of what his coach’s system is. But if he bows to Tim in recognition and respect of his new coach’s reputation as the winningest PBA coach, he might be retained. In which case LA Tenorio will have to go.
LA Tenorio looks tired playing. He often looks frustrated on the court, maybe because his celebrated teammates – Mark Caguioa, Chris Ellis, Greg Slaughter, and Japeth Aguilar – do not play his brand of basketball. LA was reared by Tim in the triangle offense in Alaska. He reached stardom when he played for Alaska under Tim. If he is invigorated because of the team’s adoption of the triangle offense, he might be retained instead of Sol.
I predict Greg Slaughter will be traded eventually after one conference or two under Tim. Greg is not talented enough, he gets by because of sheer height. Tim said he does not know Mark Caguioa. He may not know him personally but he should know him very well as a player because he must have designed defensive plays against the superstar. Yet Tim mentioned him when he doesn’t know personally most of the other Gin Kings, except for LA and Mac Barracael who had played for him in Alaska. That statement of Tim is ominous. Maybe he thinks Mark does not fit his system either. Mark is a Run-and-Gun superstar. The legendary coach and the superstar and soul of the team may not be compatible.
In consideration of Mark’s years of service and stardom with Ginebra, Mark might be made manager of the team like Jimmy Alapag was made manager of Talk ‘n Text and Alvin Patrimonio manager of Purefoods when the two still had playing years left. . .