The NLEX Road Warriors and Blackwater Bossing will get proper practice ahead of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup as they take part in the four-team exhibition series that kicks off August 31 at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
NLEX and Blackwater will join visiting teams Bay Area Dragons and French basketball club LDLC Asvel in tune-up matches.
Baptized Ligue 75 France-Philippines, the series of exhibitions is in line with the 75 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
For Road Warriors and Bossings, this is a great opportunity to get them ready early.
“It’s now part of our preparation,” said Yeng Guiao, general manager and head coach of the Road Warriors. “We’re in no rush to get an import, but we could bring him in sooner because of that. It’s an opportunity to play against bigger elite teams, and it’s an opportunity to prepare ourselves. more for the Commissioners Cup.”
Guiao said he’s become a big fan of European basketball, and that’s one of the reasons his Road Warriors have embraced their style of play.
For Sy, it will help his team prepare for the Commissioners Cup.
The Bossings had made a huge turnaround from their previous campaign. Last season, they had just one win to show in 22 games, and the team went on the longest losing streak in league history, dropping 29 straight games.
“From a management perspective, we are not happy with our Philippine Cup, we felt we could have gone further,” added Sy. “We hope that this series of exhibitions against Tony Parker’s team, as well as the Dragons, will help improve our team.”
Parker, the retired NBA legend, is the owner of LDLC Asvel. He will bring an elite team led by Nando de Colo, the star player who torched Gilas Pilipinas during the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Dragons, who will be coached by Brian Goorjian, the manager who led Australia to a bronze medal at the 2020 Olympics, will bring a strong team that has been training in the Philippines for weeks now, led by the striker 6-9 Duncan Reid, 7-5 Liu Chuanxing of the Chinese team and former NBA players Myles Powell and Andrew Nicholson.