04 December 2013

Why Ildefonso is a Better Option for the Bolts?

Bolts Need Danny Ildefonso
Before leaving for Myanmar, Meralco Bolts team consultant Jong Uichico recommended that the team try to acquire former Petron Booster star, Danny Ildefonso.

The coach of the Philippine team tasked to defend the Southeast Asian Games gold medal later this week has already given his recommendation to the management as well as his knowledge of what Ildefonso can give the Bolts.

It is obvious he wants his former player with the San Miguel-owned ballclub in the young team. The only stumbling block is another veteran forward Kerby Raymundo.

Bolts team manager, Butch Antonio, revealed to some online sports scribe that they are carefully evaluating the possibility of signing Ildefonso. He added that it might be too early to go deep in negotiations with the 36-year-old player from Pangasinan while the Bolts are still waiting for the green light to activate newly acquired Raymundo from the injury list.

“Pinag-iisipan, pero nothing (is) final. Siyempre, naging free agent na siya (Ildefonso),” Antonio told Spin.ph.

However, with small forward Reynel Hugnatan possibly out for two to three weeks after suffering an ankle injury (sprain) in the statement win against Barangay Ginebra last 3 December, the management may not have time to dilly-dally anymore. Time is crucial and decisive action should be made soon before the Bolts meet the young and eager Globalport Batang Pier on 6 December 2013.

The 35-year old Hugnatan has been averaging a modest 8.25 points and 5.5 rebounds for the Bolts in his first 3 games this All-Filipino conference. The depleted frontline of the Bolts will be hard-pressed to match these numbers since sophomore high-flyer Clifford Hodge is also nursing an injury.

The only viable option left is to sign the unrestricted free agent and two-time MVP to a possible 2-year contract. The veteran can also act as a mentor to the young Rabeh Al-Hussaini and possible future centers of the team.

During the 2011-2012 season, Ildefonso played 40 games with Petron Boosters and averaged 22.4 minutes, 8.07 points, 5.08 rebounds and 2.15 assists. If he can replicate these numbers again for the Bolts, he can ably replace the production of Hugnatan.

Ildefonso might not be the "compelling slotman" that Meralco's board governor Mon Seguismundo is looking for to match up with Petron's 6'10" center June Mar Fajardo and Ginebra's 6'11" rookie slotman Greg Slaughter, but he certainly is a better option than resident journeyman Don Allado.

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