TNT coach Nash Racela was surprised to see Jayson Castro and Terrence Romeo played together in a tune up game against Alaska, proof that the two star players of the squad are determined to show what their partnership is capable of doing for the squad.
On Wednesday, the PBA’s newest fearsome twosome backcourt tandem went to work and gave everybody a glimpse on what to expect from the league’s latest dynamic duo.
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“I was actually surprised he (Terrence) and even with Jayson na naglaro siya because his wife just gave birth to his second child. He was able to practice for two days. Normally, we don’t play them. But this is just an opportunity for them to play together and learn the chemistry. Kahit na even for a short while, hinayaan na muna namin silang maglaro,” Racela said.
“I don’t know what I saw in the game, but we’ll review the video. But at least, kami as a group, we always look for improvement. Comparing it to the previous tune up game that we had, we saw improvements. Today was a lot better and that’s more important for us now.”
Castro, now the senior stateman among the point guards playing in the Ka Tropa, saw a similar version of what happened 10 years ago when he was taken in by TNT to team up with veteran guard Jimmy Alapag.
“Kasi parang ako na yung Jimmy Alapag ngayon. Pero siyempre, yun nga yung leadership ni Jimmy hindi naman mapapantayan yun. I’m trying na maging vocal sa kanila. At the same time, maging leader. Sana maging maganda yung result ng partnership with Terrence,” added Castro.
Romeo is the most explosive player in the PBA today and for the pats few years, he led the league in scoring. But more than his production every night, Castro sees the young guard as a player who can also show his leadership qualities for the squad.
“Nung nasa Gilas kami, nag-mature talaga siya,” added Castro. “Makikita mo na nag-iisip na siya sa game, unlike before. Now, he’s playing more in a system.”
TNT lost to the Alaska, but that hardly matter as people wanted to see how the two Gilas stalwarts can make things work for the Ka Tropa.
“For sure, malaking tulong sa amin si Terrence. Alam natin ano kayang gawin ni Terrence. Maganda rin yung rotation namin sa guard ngayon. Lahat threat. Hindi katulad before,” added Castro.
Aside from the addition of Romeo, who was acquired in a trade involving Mo Tautuaa, Yousef Taha and two future picks, TNT also picked up Jericho Cruz and Domn Trollano from Rain or Shine, giving the Ka Tropa additional firepower from the backcourt.