Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Japeth Aguilar Heading To The PBA / SBP Matched PBA's Offer But To No Avail

Just to complete my Japeth Aguilar series, as all of you know by now he is going to the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) - that's his decision and we will respect that. It doesn't matter what motivated him -- he made his decision. We are just observers and we can't possibly tell him what to do. Most hardcore basketball fans want Japeth Aguilar to join Smart Gilas as they want him to hone his skills under the expert tutelage of Rajko Toroman. The Serbian is credited for developing Hamed Haddadi of Iran who made it to the NBA. Those fans expect Toroman to do the same with Japeth.

Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas did its best to lure Japeth Aguilar to the national team (in other countries it's the opposite just ask David Beckham). According to a Manila Bulletin report dated July 22 bylined by Waylon Galvez "Smart-Gilas under Serbian coach Rajko Toroman, has offered a three-year deal to Aguilar, who, if he had agreed, would have a similar contract to a PBA rookie. He played several games with Gilas in the US few months back." Let it be known that Smart Gilas is willing to pay more for talent and is not bound to any salary cap as long as the player is worth it.

Some are still begging Japeth Aguilar to reconsider. Forget it. The guy made his decision. There are plenty of talented local big men: Junmar Fajardo (will join Gilas), Greg Slaughter, Rabeh Al-Hussaini, and even Ian Sangalang the former RP youth player (6-6 or 6-7). All they need is a competent trainer who will equip them with basketball skills needed to excel in international play. Rajko Toroman is the man for that as long as they do their part too. There is hope after all. Some people will say, "But Japeth plays differently from those you mentioned!" Yes I know but what can we do? Japeth is turning pro - we have to make use of what we have.

My message to Japeth Aguilar is ---Congratulations for making it to the PBA! He's not yet officially drafted but we know it's a no-brainer - he'll be in the PBA.

Smart Gilas is losing many talented cagers. It's disturbing. Why? Our country's talent pool is not that BIG.

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