02 June 2016

How Effective Allen Durham Will Be For The Bolts?

Allen Durham
Who can better gauge the abilities of Meralco Bolts import Allen Durham than the coach of a team that he previously clobbered, coach Norman Black.

Two years ago, before he was tapped to lead the Bolts coaching staff, Black steered the Talk 'N text Tropang Texters to the top seed in the PBA Governor's Cup. The Texters was preparing to advance to the semi finals round, but had to face first Barako Bull Energy Drink bannered by 236-lb Durham in the quarterfinals.

Despite needing just one win to dispose of the Energy Drinkers and advance, the Tropang Texters are wary. A few before, they were surprised and ambushed by the Barako Bull, 88-74. The wide-bodied Durham paced the Energy Drinkers with 28 points, 29 rebounds and provided an intimidating presence in the middle despite his 6-foot-5 height.

Before the quarterfinals match-up, Black pointed out that his team will have to do a better job controlling the boards, something the Texters failed to do in their 14-point loss to the Energy.

Barako Bull coach Siot Tanquingcen said Durham not only gives them muscle inside the paint, but his mere presence gives his perimeter shooters greater confidence to take shots from beyond the arc.

“Durham makes a big difference kaya yung players namin nagkakaroon ng kumpiyansa tumira alam dahil nila malakas siya kumuha ng rebound,” Tanquingcen said.

On 16 June, the Texters proved that they were a better team after they overwhelmed the Energy Drinkers with a balance scoring and firing steadily in all fronts to advance to the semifinals.

“We’re very balanced as far as scoring is concerned. We had a lot of contributions from almost everybody. One of the keys in my team is we really have to get at least four guys scoring in double-digits,” Black said.

Despite the loss, Grace Bible College Almuni proved that he is a thorn to all teams he plays against. Durham ended his 4-game stint in the conference with 25 points and 17 rebounds, to go with his six assists.

Durham signed with Hermine Nantes Atlantique of the French League from 2014-2016 where he led the team in scoring (18.6 points per game), rebounding (9.8 rebounds per game) and minutes played (32.1 minutes per game). More importantly, the almost 28-year old led his team consistently in player efficiency rating (PER) or per minute productivity with 27.9.

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