San Miguel Beer coach Leo Austria said the Beermen are bringing in Jordanian playmaker Mahmoud Abdeen as their Asian reinforcement for the PBA Governors Cup.
Austria said the entry of Abdeen is part of the team’s plan to rest Fil-Am point guard Chris Ross, who is playing with a torn meniscus on his right knee, which he sustained two weeks ago against Barangay Ginebra.
“We opted to get an Asian import because we didn’t have Chris Ross that time against GlobalPort, and what we did is we needed somebody who can back up as a point guard,” Austria said, moments after steering San Miguel past Meralco, 110-106 on Wednesday.
Abdeen arrives in Manila early Thursday and will shortly join San Miguel’s practice at the Acropolis gym.
The hurting Ross managed to average 7.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 7.5 assists for the Beermen in their last two games after skipping the team’s game over a week ago against GlobalPort.
While SMB has a healthy Alex Cabagnot at the backcourt, Austria felt the left-handed guard thrives more at the two-spot.
“Alex is very effective as an off guard so kami, we’re just preparing for another point guard going to the playoffs because all teams have very good point guard,” he added.
“This playoff time, kailangna meron kang bubunutin.”
Abdeen, who is expected to make it within the 6-3 Asian import height limit, played for Jordan national team in the 2013 and 2015 FIBA-Asia men’s championships.
He also saw action for Jordan in the 2012 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying tournament and the 2014 FIBA Asia Cup in China.
The 28-year-old Abdeen owns averages of 5.7 points, 1.8 assists and 1.6 rebounds in the FIBA tournaments since 2012. – Richard Dy
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