Friday, October 28, 2011
Barako Bull Eyes 4th Straight Win
MANILA, Philippines — Though some of his players are now members of the so-called “Vintage Club,” coach Junel Baculi knows Barako Bull still has what it takes to contend for playoff berths.
The red-hot Energy try extend their winning streak to four as they play the unpredictable B-Meg Llamados in the PBA Philippine Cup today at the Panabo Multi-Purpose Cultural, Tourism and Sports Center in Davao del Norte.
The lone encounter between the Energy and Llamados presented by Phoenix Fuel is set at 6:45 p.m.
Baculi took over a team that acquired in the off-season former two-time Most Valuable Player (MVP) Willie Miller, as well as fellow veterans Mic Pennisi, Sunday Salvacion, Don Allado and Jondan Salvador in separate deals.
Barako Bull also took in rookies Dylan Ababou and Allein Maliksi to join another set of “seniors” like Paul Artadi, Wynne Arboleda, Leo Najorda, Dorian Pena and Danny Seigle.
The 6-foot-7 Seigle was sidelined the last three games due to calf muscle injury, but the Energy won all their matches by beating Barangay Ginebra (88-75), defending champion Talk ’N Text (100-86) and newcomer Shopinas.com (96-78).
“The veteran players are proving that they still have several years left, that they can still contend and win,” Baculi said, referring to the likes of Miller, Pennisi, Pena and Salvacion, who were all acquired after helping their previous teams to either a championship or a Finals stint.
Both Pennisi and Salvacion played key roles in Petron’s title run in the Governors’ Cup against TNT, but they were traded to Barako Bull during the PBA Rookie Draft.
“They are still adjusting to the system, but we’re getting there. The good thing is that we’re winning while players are trying to adjust,” said Baculi, who will have Seigle back in the roster but will miss both Najorda and Maliksi due to knee injuries.
Barako Bull will face a B-Meg side that snapped a two-game skid last week with a 97-80 win over Powerade where PJ Simon collected 21 points while James Yap contributed 20 points, including 12 in the first period.