The Purefoods Star Hotshots seek to duplicate San Mig Coffee’s glorious days in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
Star Hotshots team governor Rene Pardo considers the 2013-2014 season as the most unforgettable year in franchise history when the San Mig Coffee Mixers captured a grand slam title by winning three straight championships in a year.
They’ve won the Philippine Cup, Commissioner’s Cup and the Governor’s Cup in one season.
“Winning a grand slam in July 2014 is the most memorable year to cherish,” Pardo, 66, a team officer of Purefoods Star Hotshots since 1985, told The Manila Times in a phone interview on Monday. “We are aiming to duplicate that achievement next season.”
After failing to reach the semifinals of the Philippine Cup and Commissioner’s Cup, Pardo said the Hotshots underwent team revamp last week acquiring combo guard Ryan Roose Garcia and John Rodney Brondial from Phoenix and swingman Keith Jensen from GlobalPort.
“We can’t allow James [Yap], PJ [Simon] and Rafi [Reavis] to play above 30 minutes because they might get injured, so we acquired fresh talents or young bloods to beef up our roster and back them up,” said Pardo. “We’re hoping they adapt well with our system. We will just see it.”
The Hotshots gave up rookies forward-center Norbert Torres and former Letran playmaker Mark Cruz, former San Sebastian guard Ronald Pascual and center Yousef Taha to acquire Garcia, Brondial and Jensen in a recent eight-player trade.
Before winning the grand slam two years ago under former coach Tim Cone, Purefoods is considered one of the PBA’s celebrated teams since its entry into the league as an expansion team in 1988. They brought four-time Most Valuable Player awardee Alvin Patrimonio and Jerry Cordiñera.
The power forward Patrimonio, who retired in 2004, was Purefoods’ franchise player before two-time Most Valuable Player James Yap took over in 2005.
Pardo also said the Purefoods Corporation was sold by the Ayala Corporation to San Miguel Corporation (SMC) in 2001.
Since 1988 from the ownership of Ayala to SMC in the present day, Purefoods used 14 different brand names from Purefoods Hotdogs in 1988 up to Star Hotshots in 2015.
“All of us were acquired by San Miguel Corporation when it bought the franchise in 2001,” added Pardo. “Changing the brand name is done due to marketing purposes by the SMC to promote the product. It depends upon the management’s decision.”
In 2010, SMC decided to use the B-Meg Derby Ace Llamados product; a game fowl feeds by the SMC, from 2010-2012 in the PBA. SMC also hired former Alaska mentor Tim Cone as B-Meg head coach in 2011.
In 2012 up to 2014, SMC changed the team’s name to San Mig Coffee Mixers.
After the grand slam season, San Mig Coffee was changed to Purefoods Star Hotshots in 2015. Former assistant coach Jason Webb was promoted to head coach after Cone was appointed as head coach of Barangay Ginebra.
Pardo said that the product San Mig Coffee remains in the market under SMC.
“San Mig Coffee is still available in the market although it just reduced some variants,” Pardo said. “From San Mig Coffee to Star Hotshots in the PBA is part of marketing and management decision by SMC.”