by Waylon Galvez
Globalport has opted to tap the services of American Leroy Hickerson believing his familiarity with the league’s brand of play will give the Batang Pier an extra edge when the PBA Governors’ Cup gets going.
“That’s one of the reasons why we decided to have Leroy as our import,” said coach Pido Jarencio, whose initial stint with Globalport had the team finishing with a dismal1-8 card.
“At least with Leroy, he is already familiar with the style of play in the PBA. The adjustment he’ll have with his new teammates will only be minimal,” added Jarencio.
The 6-foot-5 Hickerson was a scoring machine in two times he played for the league.
The 32-year-old native of Louisville, Kentucky first played for Air21, becoming the team’s fourth reinforcement in 2010. Two years later, he played for Barako Bull – also as a replacement import for Jamine Peterson.
Despite that, Hickerson, a product of University of Cumberlands Patriots, did well as he averaged 32.8 points in six games with a high of 46 points. On his second tour of duty, with Barako Bull, he normed 25.3 points in seven games with a conference personal best of 38 points.
Jarencio said he expect Hickerson to be here anytime this week, and with two weeks left to prepare before the Governors’ Cup, he is hoping that he can gel well with the locals like Jay Washington, Alex Cabagnot, rookies RR Garcia, Nico Salva and Terrence Romeo.
In 37 matches with Halcones Rojos Veracruz, Hickerson averaged 14.5 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.7 assists, and was named to the Mythical Team. Following his stint in Mexico, he had a brief appearance with San German in Puerto Rico.
“He’s in game shape, and siyempre iba ‘yung confidence kapag galing sa championship ang player. So hopefully madala ni Leroy ‘yun sa team,” said Jarencio, adding that he is optimistic on their campaign in the Governors’ Cup.
“We don’t want to expect, but we’re doing everything we can, especially on the defensive end. If we can do that, and stay consistent, the wins will follow,” added Jarencio as the team awaits the return of Washington, Romeo, Kelly Nabong and Erik Menk from various injuries.