Meanwhile, Balkman is re-surfacing in the local pro league five years after an outrage that saw him choke teammate Arwind Santos resulting in a lifetime ban in the league.File
MANILA, Philippines — San Miguel enlisted Renaldo Balkman to replace Troy Gillenwater four days before its next game in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup versus Alaska Milk in Dumaguete.
Gillenwater was given the pink slip after two forgettable games. He will also receive a pay cut after drawing a fine of P20,000 for a physical contact on referee Rey Yante that led to his ejection in the second quarter of their game against the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters Sunday.
Meanwhile, Balkman is re-surfacing in the local pro league five years after an outrage that saw him choke teammate Arwind Santos resulting in a lifetime ban in the league.
Current commissioner Willie Marcial, however, lifted the ban on Balkman on March 27, opening the door for his possible PBA comeback.
Marcial said he made the verdict based on Balkman’s appeal and on the decision of former commissioner Chito Salud, the league chieftain when he committed his infamous act.
But Balkman has since mended his ways and drew the warm reception of Filipino cage fans in helping San Miguel Alab Pilipinas to a title run in the recently concluded ABL season.
Gillenwater was no longer present in the San Miguel practice yesterday. Balkman is expected to join the Beermen in training starting today.
“SMC has decided to take a different direction and tap the services of Balkman in lieu of Gillenwater,” said SMB team manager Gee Abanilla.
Meanwhile, Columbian Dyip hopes to sustain the momentum of one of its strongest starts in a tourney, seeking win No. 4 when it takes on Magnolia in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
A team that scored only a lone win in 11 matches in the recent all-Filipino conference, the Dyip squad has gained the attention of almost everybody on its remarkable surge marked by big wins over Blackwater (126-98), NLEX (123-103) and Rain or Shine (104-96).
Coach Ricky Dandan and his troops try to improve their position in the Top Five in going up against the Hotshots at 4:30 p.m., proceeding the 7 p.m. setto between the NLEX Road Warriors and the GlobalPort Batang Pier.