Rain or Shine is pinning its hopes on a young, talented undersized power forward, while Talk ‘N Text and Alaska will rely on balik-imports to boost their respective campaigns in the season-ending PBA Governors’ Cup.
The Elasto Painters will tap the services of Jamelle Cornley, a 25-year-old, 6-foot-5 power forward out of Penn State. Cornley has been on Rain or Shine’s radar for two years, finally coming to terms with the import now.
“It was our former import Jai Lewis who recommended him to us. We were trying to get him even when I was still the head coach of Rain or Shine, but we settled for Rod Nealy then. We felt that once we advanced to the next round, we had a chance of getting him, but it didn’t happen,” said Rain or Shine assistant Caloy Garcia.
PBA chairman Mamerto Mondragon, who represents Rain or Shine on the PBA Board of Governors, said Cornley has already signed a contract with the team and is scheduled to arrive Saturday morning.
A power forward in college, Cornley was forced to play the wing position when he played in France, where he averaged 14.2 points and 5.7 rebounds in 30 minutes for Bourg. He also had a stint in Israel where he averaged 17 points and 7.3 rebounds.
Rain or Shine decided to go with Cornley instead of last year’s import Arizona Reid, who is still playing in Germany until May 10.
“We wanted to get Arizona Reid, but the earliest he could come in is May. Gusto namin, mas maaga makakarating yung import na maglalaro sa amin,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao.
Garcia said the team will put reid on standby.
“Anything can happen between now and May 10. Baka magustuhan na ni Coach Yeng si Cornley hindi natin alam. Cornley is a better post-up player and taller than Arizon Reid. He’s also an intense player, which is something na gusting-gusto ni Coach Yeng sa mga imports,” said Garcia.
Harris for Talk ‘N Text, Forte for Alaska
Talk ‘N Text and Alaska, meanwhile, have decided to bring in old reliables to reinforce their squads.
Paul Harris, who led the Tropang Texters to the Commissioner’s Cup crown last season, will come back for another run. Talk ‘N Text is currently battling B-MEG in the ongoing Commissioner’s Cup finals series.
Forte, on the other hand, will be making his third tour of duty in the PBA.
He suited up for the Air21 Express, in the Fiesta Conference, before playing for Alaska in the Governors’ Cup last season, helping the team reach the semifinals.
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