16 August 2013

Bolts Start Conference Without Dillinger

Jared Dillinger
By Alder Almo
The Philippine Star, 15 August 2013

Jared Dillinger's debut with the Meralco Bolts has to wait.

Dillinger, whom the Bolts acquired from Talk n Text in a three-team trade during the conference break, is still in the US recuperating from the pelvic bone injury he sustained in a car accident during the PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals.

"JD (Dillinger) will be ready early next month," Gregorio told Philstar.com "He is still in the US doing strengthening exercises."

With Dillinger still in sickbay, Gregorio will be banking on the core of Mac Cardona, Chris Ross and rookie Cliff Hodgle along with returning import Mario West.

They will start their Governors' Cup campaign against the Petron Blaze Boosters Friday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

West arrived Thursday morning as late replacement to Bolts' original choice DJ Kennedy, who did not pass the 6-5 height limit.
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"All systems go for us," Gregorio said. "Mario West arrived this (Thursday) morning and he is ready to compete."

The returning import averaged 30 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 2.5 steals in 11 games last season leading the Bolts to a semifinal stint also as a replacement to Champ Oguchi.

West told Gregorio that he is in good basketball shape.

"Hopefully, he can turn in the numbers that he produced for us the last time he was here," Gregorio said.

Gregorio is banking on defense as the Bolts' main weapon this conference especially with the defensive-minded West on board.

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