Basketball

Powerade, Petron agree on new Lassiter trade

AKTV/Paul Ryan Tan

Despite Powerade coach Bo Perasol’s earlier declaration of his preference not to trade Marcio Lassiter, the Tigers’ star rookie is once again in a deal that would send him to the Petron Blaze Boosters.

The PBA commissioner’s office on Friday confirmed receipt of a five-player trade proposal between Powerade and Petron that involves Lassiter as the centerpiece.

In the proposed deal, Lassiter and point guard Celino Cruz will be dealt to the Boosters in exchange for center Rabeh Al-Hussaini, Rey Guevarra, and Lordy Tugade.

The trade is not yet final, as PBA commissioner Chito Salud has the right to veto or revise deals which he deems unfair.

“Pag-aaralan kong mabuti yung trade,” said PBA commissioner Chito Salud.

According to the league’s media bureau chief Willie Marcial, the trade papers were signed by Perasol and Powerade executive Ronnie Asuncion, and Petron team manager Hector Calma.

Earlier this month, Perasol said he was against trading Lassiter, but added that the decision would be management’s, not his.

“Alam niyo naman ang stand ko, kung ako ang papipiliin as much as possible ayaw ko ma-trade si Marcio,” he said.

It will be the second time this season Petron will be involved in a deal to try to acquire Lassiter, the top candidate for Rookie of the Year honors. Last February, the two teams agreed on a deal that would send Lassiter to Petron in exchange for Noy Baclao and Rey Guevarra. Salud vetoed the deal, citing its negative effect on the balance of the league.

The controversial deal proposal came amid reports that Coca-Cola Bottlers, Inc., which owns the Powerade Tigers, has sold the franchise to San Miguel Corporation, which owns Petron, raising questions from other team officials. Both CCBPI and SMC denied that there was a sale.

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