Nov. 07, 2016
Fantasy booking Jeric Teng's 2016-17 PBA preseason
Former UST prep guard Jeric Teng is in search of a new house.
Rain or Shine just let his contract slide... and unlike what most people are saying online... is different from getting released or waived.
Now Jeric Teng’s PBA stint is anything but fine and dandy. Teng started out as a potential first rounder but ended up unceremoniously in the second round of the 2013 PBA Draft behind the likes of James Forrester, Ryan Buenafe, Alex Nuyles, Justin Chua, Nico Salva, and Isaac Holstein. Yeng Guiao thought he was a steal in the second round but Teng is also the third rookie taken by the Elasto Painters after third pick overall Raymond Almazan and Nuyles.
Plus Guiao is loaded with shooters and slashers. When the best talent available is taken by an overloaded core, then that player is going to get a shitty deal!
Rain or Shine would select Jericho Cruz the following year and a season ago, Guiao brought to his fold three slashers in Maverick Ahanmisi, Josan Nimes, and Don Trollano... so in terms of player development, Teng got buried in the mix.
Last season, Teng appeared in 19 contests where he averaged 3.58ppg, 1.37rpg, and 0.32apg for the Elasto Painters in less than ten minutes of action. However, he split the season playing for both ROS and Mighty Sports.
I guess the die was cast when Rain or Shine loaned him to some pseudo-National Team in the middle of their season.
I initially thought his bad PBA career happened because Yeng Guiao hates his gameplay. Now I think this is an entire team thing. I thought for sure Caloy Garcia could use Alvin Teng’s spawn in some capacity. The 25-year old had the moves but it felt as if he’s uncomfortable with the leather. He basically plays like a college guy even in his third year unlike Jericho Cruz who took the bull by his horns in his first taste of PBA action. And in hindsight, I thought his cover boy/candy cutie status took his career to the pits.
But then Teng never really played significant minutes.
How can a player develop if he can’t catch a break?
So right now Teng must be in hoop hell.
Or so we think.
There are two great scenarios for a possible Jeric Teng resurgence.
If he wants to lead a core of aimless athletes, then he could sign for the Mahindra Floodbusters. Mahindra lost KG Canaleta, Aldrech Ramos, Keith Agovida, and Paolo Taha in the preseason but it’s not like they got better pawns in Russel Escoto, Josan Nimes, Alex Mallari, Franklin Bonifacio, Dennise Villamor, and former Rain or Shine vet Ryan Arana. Teng could be their chief scorer once he gets his confidence back. More importantly, Mahindra could use this guy as poster boy for their marketing campaigns.
It’s not like they can always use Manny Pacquiao to make their brand relevant.
And how can we forget Jeric Teng’s McDo viral with Jessy Mendiola.
But then if Jeric Teng wants to play and at the same time win, then he could try out for the Alaska Aces. Last season, Alaska let Cyrus Baguio fly away to Phoenix. Dondon Hontiveros is way past his prime. Alaska currently has the likes of Kevin Racal, Ping Exciminiano, RJ Jazul, Chris Banchero, and Rome dela Rosa at the SG spot and instead of taking a player in the regular draft, they passed up after acquiring Carl Bryan Cruz. I know this is a tougher climb compared to Mahindra but Teng could use this team to re-configure his game the same way it did with Larry Fonacier nearly a decade ago.
One must understand this – Teng’s entire career had him consistently net nearly four points, two rebounds, and an assist in ten minutes. If you triple his numbers, he’s basically Peter June Simon. But unlike The Scoring Apostle, Teng is just 25 years old. To put things into perspective, Arnold Van Opstal is almost two months OLDER than Teng. And Teng’s age could be his edge... along with his shotmaking capabilities... if given the opportunity.
When Rain or Shine released Teng, it’s probably for the best. If he stayed in Rain or Shine, he’s going to be the next player in Garcia’s rotation after Jeff Chan, Jericho Cruz, James Yap, Jireh Ibanes, Chris Tiu, and Gilas pick Mike Tolomia. Yap, Tolomia, and Jay Washington will try to make their presence felt and while they are doing this, the rest of the team will try to hang on to their spots. When Garcia coached Gabe Norwood the first time in Rain or Shine, he was a regular double digit scorer. On the other hand, I have yet to see Beau Belga do masterclass work without the guidance of Guiao (think of his career when he was still playing for Purefoods and Meralco).
Will Norwood return to his old go-to-guy self?
Will Belga revert to sole enforcer status?
And this is why Teng could be better off looking for a team that will give him the opportunity than the championship. If he goes to Mahindra or to an extent Alaska, he could have probably saved his PBA career.