Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) signed up former Alaska reinforcement Henry Bill Walker and Lebanese point guard Rodrigue Akl as imports in the Philippine Basketball Association Season 41 Governors’ Cup in July.
NLEX mentor Boyet Fernandez said the Road Warriors need a strong defender and scorer who can lead the team in the third conference, while the Asian import will absolutely bring his leadership during games.
“We got Henry [Walker] as our American import and [Rodrigue] Akl as our Asian import. Both imports will compliment our local line up,” Fernandez, who steered the defunct Sta. Lucia Realtors to 2008 Philippine Cup title, texted The Manila Times on Sunday.
“I’m always looking for a great conference for NLEX,” he said.
Two years ago, Walker played for Alaska while Akl was a member of the Lebanon national team that played in previous FIBA Asia Championship editions.
Walker, a former New York Knicks and Miami Heat guard, averaged 21 points and 8.9 rebounds for Alaska in 2014.
One of his remarkable days in the PBA was when he almost finished with a near triple-double of 27 points, 13 rebounds and nine assists in a win by Alaska over San Miguel Beer in May 2014.
“Akl’s leadership is very valuable to the team that’s why we hired him,” he added.
Known for his great shooting touch from the three-point zone, scoring prowess, passing ability and defense, Walker is definitely one of the best returning imports who will play this coming third conference.
JOSEF T. RAMOS