New Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) coach Yeng Guiao said that he aims to send the Road Warriors deeper into the semifinals of the upcoming Philippine Basketball Association Season 42 Philippine Cup starting November 20.
“In the previous conferences, NLEX made it to the quarterfinals and now we’ll try our best to go deeper into the playoffs reasonably in the semifinals or if we’re lucky in the finals,” Guiao, who replaced Boyet Fernandez as NLEX coach in September, told The Manila Times.
Guiao said that he would employ his usual system of running and shooting game – mainly a defensive game this season. “I believe that my old effective system in which there is no certain scorer will power NLEX to become a winning team,” he said.
The acquisition of the 6’5 center Bradwyn Guinto from Mahindra and Gilas’ 6’4 rookie Fonzo Gotladera will fortify NLEX’s frontline that is being manned by veteran Paul Asi Taulava and Enrico Villanueva.
“I’m okay with Bradwyn He is the kind of player that we need. So when we got the opportunity, we didn’t think twice of getting him,” added Guiao. “He is a blue-collar worker while Gotladera will be a project for us. They will boost our frontline.”
Besides Guinto and Gotladera, another addition to the team is former Blackwater guard and prolific scorer Carlo Lastimosa.
“Lastimosa is doing very well but I remind him that he’s not forced to score a lot unlike in his previous role,” said Guiao. “In my system during my coaching stint with Red Bull, AIR21 and Rain or Shine, everyone can score and become involved in the game.”
The Road Warriors already have skilled guards among them Jonas Villanueva, Raul Soyud, Kevin Alas, Garvo Lanete and Eman Monfort. They are currently playing in a pocket tournament in Cebu against local teams according also to Guiao.
“We won against a local team here in Cebu last night,” said Guiao. “The team is getting cohesive but we need to play more games.”
The other members of the Road Warriors are Mac Baracael, Sean Anthony, Glenn Khobuntin and Eric Camson.