MPBL: Players who need more exposure next season

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The MPBL Anta Rajah cup provided ample opportunity for a lot of players to show their wares and make their respective cases for their careers – whether their gunning to be stars in this league or aiming for a shot at a spot in the PBA.

And with the league doubling its number of participant in the upcoming season, it’s imperative for a lot of teams to re-evaluate the talents that they have and give more playing time to those who could give their teams a better shot.

Today we’re taking a look at some of these talents who might – and should – see more time next season.

Orly Daroya (Imus Bandera)
Imus didn’t usually have luck on their side during the inaugural conference – they finished ninth with a 2-7 record – but they struck gold with Daroya.

The sweet-shooting swingman was second behind ‘ligang-labas’ legend Ian Melencio in points (11.8 per game) and was ridiculous from downtown, knocking down 47 percent of his attempts (20-of-43), good for first among players with at least 15 treys made.

He’s also a decent rebounder (4.6 per game) and normed a block per game despite playing an average of only 16 minutes.

Al Carlos (Bataan Defenders)
Carlos wasn’t the most efficient player for the Defenders (36 percent from the field) but he’s shown flashes of what he can do when given a bigger role. He exploded a couple of times in the inaugural conference, with his best game coming against the struggling Imus – he poured 22 points built around five treys and on 7-of-10 shooting and even added five rebounds and five assists for good measure.

With the uncertainty of Gary David playing next season, look for Carlos to be one of the beneficiaries.

Jeff Morillo (Quezon City Capitals)
Morillo formed 1/2 of a vaunted frontline which is one of the best shot-blockers in the league. The problem was that he didn’t do much of anything else; he rarely scored (2.1 points in 11 games) and barely rebounded (1.4 boards).

Maybe you could blame it to the fact that he only played 10 minutes per game. He might see the floor more often in the future, hopefully; in the team’s last game against Valenzuela Yulz, he played for 17 minutes – the most that he’s had in the conference – and logged six points, four rebounds and five blocks.

Jayson Grimaldo (Bataan City Athletics)

Grimaldo wasn’t able to hit the court that much (12.3 minutes in 15 games) but he was the tournament’s third-best shot-blocker. He was also pretty accurate (given the limited shots he took) and normed a 56 percent field goal percentage. It’s possible that he might not play a bigger role for Bataan, but they should at least look at the possibility of giving him action.

Jopher Custodio (Caloocan Supremos)
His numbers aren’t eye-popping, but a deeper look at them reveals that he’s well-rounded. Custodio logged 7.6 points and 5.1 rebounds in only 13 minutes per game, but his percentages (45 percent from the field, 37 percent from downtown) are impressive.

Custodio could both knock down threes and hustle for rebounds; he logged 28 rebounds in the team’s last three games and came out with his best output of the conference against QC with an 18-point, 10-rebound double-double. He also made four out of nine treys that game.