NLEX Road Warriors coach Yeng Guiao revealed that he wanted to reunite with Wendell McKines for the season-ending PBA Governors’ Cup, but his old import turned down their offer to join the loaded San Miguel Beermen.
“We’ve been talking to him and and paliwanag niya sa amin, he’s been having problems with his contractual obligations in the Korean Basketball League. Looks like he found a way to get out of his commitment in Korea,” Guiao told InterAksyon.
McKines played for Guiao and Rain or Shine in the 2015 Governors’ Cup where they reached the semifinals.
NLEX team manager said the team offered the same package McKines had when he was still with Rain or Shine.
“I instructed (assistant team manager) Raymond Celis to negotiate with McKiness. Coach Yeng told me this was the offer to him by Rain or Shine previously, so we give him an offer, but he turned us down,” Dulatre said.
In an earlier interview, McKines said he was grateful to Guiao for “giving me a second opportunity” in the PBA.
“I appreciate him giving me a second opportunity of playing in the PBA. I look forward seeing him, as a person. Thanking him,” he said.
Left with no choice but to find another reinforcement, Guiao has decided to tap 27-year-old journeyman Aaron Fuller.
“I’m impressed with what I saw from him. He’s a versatile player, can play the no.4 and no. 3 spots,” Guiao said. “It’s hard to find a player in the US who can play the No. 4, but Aaron looks comfortable playing the power forward and small forward spots.”
Fuller had stints in Portugal, New Zealand and Mexico.
NLEX is now looking forward to rebooting its campaign in the Governors’ Cup after a miserable Commissioner’s Cup where the Road Warriors have yet to notch a win after nine games.
But Guiao couldn’t help but be optimistic on getting a blue-chip player in next season’s Rookie Draft. NLEX is poised to land the No.1 pick in a draft that could include the names of Kiefer Ravena and Ray Parks.
“We’re hoping they would join. I’m not really focused on it now, pero pwedeng pag-isipan,” Guiao said.
Team manager Ronald Dulatre confirmed NLEX has already sent feelers to Ravena who, after graduating from Ateneo, decided to develop his skills in the United States and play for Mighty Sports in international tournaments.