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PBA: Howell returns as TNT import

Richard Howell

Talk ’N Text is once again tapping the services of Richard Howell hoping he can bring the Tropang Texters back to the finals of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup which starts on Jan. 27.

Howell helped power the Tropang Texters to the finals last year but they fell short, eventually losing to Purefoods (formerly San Mig Super Coffee) in a best-of-seven series.

TNT Coach Jong Uichico said the 6-foot-8 Howell is expected to arrive tomorrow.

“We’ll have least adjustments with him, that’s why we decided to bring him back,” said Uichico yesterday. “He’s got good numbers, he helped us make it to the finals, so we’re giving him a second chance.”

Howell, a former stalwart at North Carolina State, captured the Best Import trophy in last season’s Commissioner’s Cup after averaging 19.5 points, 18.6 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.5 steals.

Uichico said Howell is excited to return since he will be playing against his former Wolfpack teammate CJ Leslie, who will be Globalport’s reinforcement.

Howell, who recently played in Italy, and the 6-foot-9 Leslie were teammates at North Carolina State from 2010 until 2013, helping the Wolfpack to back-to-back NCAA appearances in 2012 and 2013.

Barako Bull and expansion teams Kia and Blackwater will have reinforcements with unlimited height after finishing between 9th to 12th places.