Fuel Masters plot high-octane attack

Expect a fast, entertaining Phoenix Super LPG squad to show up when the Philippine Basketball Association unveils its Governors’ Cup starting this Sunday at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

Newly-appointed Fuel Masters head coach Jamike Jarin said they are looking to dazzle the fans with their run-and-gun attacks in a bid to win their first title in the season-ending conference.

Jarin, who succeeded Topex Robinson as head coach, said he will not implement drastic changes but will just infuse some strategies that will enable them to compete against league heavyweights.

“As the old saying goes; why fix it if it ain’t broken?” Jarin, a former Ateneo de Manila University high school coach, told Daily Tribune.

“Coach Topex did a great job laying the foundation of the team and I’ve been with the squad for the past three years so not much adjustment is needed.”

“But there’s going to be some integration of my system as well. Nevertheless, we expect our team to compete against the top squads in the tournament.”

Under Robinson’s first season, the Fuel Masters overachieved as it fell short of reaching the finals of the Philippine Cup under a bubble setup in Clark in Pampanga three years ago.

Calvin Abueva served as the leader, but since his trade for Chris Banchero and the acquisition of Vic Manuel in a separate deal, things were never the same again for the Fuel Masters.

Both Banchero and Manuel are no longer with the squad while the Fuel Masters lost another crucial piece in Justin Chua.

But the franchise’s biggest setback, however, was the departure of top gun Matthew Wright to the Japan B. League last year.

The Fuel Masters tried to keep their heads above water in the Commissioner’s Cup behind the heroics of rookies Tyler Tio and Encho Serrano.

Tio averaged 12.9 points per game, including a 33.8 percent shooting from the three-point area while Serrano averaged 12.3 points, 37.5 percent shooting from the arc and close to three assists per game.


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