Petron Blaze Boosters, the team once known as the San Miguel Beermen (and once again will be known as the San Miguel Beermen come next conference) found themselves trying to find an answer after their campaign ended at the hands of the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters Friday night at the on going PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals. The Boosters once again at the bad end of another disappointing season, yes they made it in the semis, they even made it to the Finals of the last conference but with a team that includes the league MVP Arwind Santos, Alex Cabagnot, Chris Lutz, Marcio Lassiter, Doug Kramer, Chris Ross, Jason Deutchman, former league MVP Danny Ildefonso (Ildefenso was released this season and is now playing for Meralco) to name a few, despite having a star studded line up Petron found itself the butt of all jokes and the epitome of disappointment. Petron despite having a star studded line up over the years has only managed to secure one championship (2011 Governor’s Cup), blowing a 3-1 lead (2011-2012 Philippine Cup), not making it in the Quarterfinal stage (2012 Commissioner’s Cup), bowing out at the Semis of the 2012 Governor’s Cup, Eliminated in the quarterfinals at the 2012-2013 Philippine Cup, In the 2013 Commissioner’s Cup Petron was led by a former NBA lottery pick Renaldo Balkman only to see him banned from playing in the league (by choking his teammate) and Petron went on a downward spiral getting booted out again in the quarterfinals, In the 3rd Conference Petron finished a top of the team standings, dominated all their opponents, Arwind Santos won the MVP award and found themselves one win away to win another championship only to be shattered by the San Mig Coffee Mixers and Santos choking in Game 7.
Throughout those losses, disappointing campaigns and meltdowns, the finger pointing Arwind calling out team mates, the choking incident, former coach Ato Agustin unable to defuse the situation, former Petron player Jay Washington demanding more touches, young studs (that they once have) Noy Baclao, Rey Guevarra and Rabeh Al Husseini riding the bench, Racela telling Deutchman he’s not going to get minutes, the alleged continuous bantering inside the team which is evident when Arwind Santos wanted the Best Player of the Conference despite being booted out early in the tournament (will show link later) just to name a few made the media and fans dubbed this brouhaha as Petronovela.
Never I’ve seen a team this talented and constantly found ways to shoot themselves in the leg. Yes they won the 2011 Governor’s Cup but their line up back then was so depleted that it robbed them of their constant stars that usually delivers for them, since they slowly got their core back that’s the time when Petron started melting down, coaching changes (as if Petron had 4 different coaches in 3 years), constant roster shake ups (loading more up and comers, stars and draft picks) didn’t help either, Chemistry problems arose as touches during crunch time can be summed up to words such as ball hogging, failed hero ball (well it succeeds sometimes) and bone headed turn overs, this is the usual problem if the coach is unable to establish player roles or if players doesn’t want to accept certain roles. Another point is that when your MVP runs his mouth but is failing to deliver when he is needed (even commits turnovers and blames his teammates for it). Let’s face it, Petron needs an overhaul, they need not to reload but they need to rebuild, fans have been calling to trade Arwind Santos and Alex Cabagnot, according to a Petron fan on twitter watching them is “life draining”. Arwind on the other hand thinks of himself more than achieving a team goal (which is to win a championship, again I will provide a link to prove this), while JuneMar Fajardo doesn’t care if he wins the Player of the Conference award. Petron needs to evaluate their team, they need to remove whiners, self centered dick wads and chemistry killers **cough** Arwind Santos **cough**. For Arwind and Alex they need to re-evaluate what they really want in their basketball lives, did they want to remember as the clashing teammates constantly bringing disappointment to a team that should have dominated the league, whether they be traded or not they can either be an asset or a liability depending on where their heart is (if they have one) and what they wanted to accomplish. Is individual success such as winning MVPs, Best Player of the Conference, inclusion the Mythical team, All Defensive team or Defensive Player of the year is far more important to winning a championship, then they better retire.
As promised here’s the link and the difference between 2 of Petron’s best players. Back in 2012 JuneMar Fajardo wasn’t with the team yet..
Thank you for reading..