Another upgrade is in the works for Blackwater.
Just over a week after acquiring Chris Ellis and big man Dave Marcelo from Barangay Ginebra, the three-year-old PBA franchise could add vastly-improved wingman Allein Maliksi and rookie Chris Javier after agreeing to deal Kyle Pascual and Bambam Gamalinda to the Star Hotshots.
Team insiders said Star and Blackwater have come to terms with the 2-for-2 deal on Saturday with the trade papers already sent to PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa for approval.
Once the deal is approved, Maliksi, who has seen his minutes rise this season since Star traded James Yap for Paul Lee last season, has played his last game with the Hotshots on Saturday which ended in a 96-90 loss to the Meralco Bolts on Satuday in Sta. Rosa.
The 6-4 Maliksi, selected eighth overall by Baarako Bull in the 2011 PBA Draft, could be an additional scoring threat to Blackwater, his playing time rising this season since Star traded James Yap to Rain or Shine late last year. The athletic wingman in fact, earned a spot at Gilas where he became part of the national squad that retained the SEABA men’s title here in Manila.
The Elite already have young big man JP Erram, Roi Sumang, Mike DiGregorio and Mac Belo as go-to-guys this season. They are currenty at 4-5 with their playoffs hopes still very much alive.
Javier can be an extra backup big man for Blackwater since acquiring Marcelo.
On the other hand, Pascual, who has seen his role diminished since Erram’s arrival, can inject youth to Star’s aging roster while providing an additional post defender and mid-range shooting.
Gamalinda can also be a welcome addition for Star because of his ability to shoot from long range.
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