With a first hand experience, Meralco Bolts import Allen Durham knows how good a threat the Les Blues of France is to the Gilas Pilipinas’ Olympic bid.
The 6-foot-5 Durham played for Nantes in the Ligue Nationale de Basket (LNB) before flying to Manila two weeks ago to suit up for Meralco in the Governors’ Cup which will start right after the Manila FIBA OQT.
“They (Gilas) should prepare hard because France is really a very good team,” said Durham to FOX Sports, after the Bolts’ Tuesday afternoon practice at the Meralco Gym in Pasig.
Even without NBA players like Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier, the former Barako Bull reinforcement believes the French national team, ranked 5th in the world, will be playing at a high level that could overwhelm foes in the Manila affair.
Nonetheless, the Wyoming, Michigan native is pumped up to see former Texas Legends teammate Ray Parks playing for Gilas.
“I’m gonna see what type and things he has improved on,” said Durham on Parks, who recently made it to the final lineup of Gilas. “It’s gonna be exciting to see him, I’m happy for him.”
As for his second stint in the PBA, Durham said he is still trying to get in top form but will be ready to lead the Bolts once the season-ending conference kicks off.
“I just want to come in, fill in and do my part, try to help the team pick up where they left off,” he said, referring to Meralco’s impressive Commissioner’s Cup campaign.
Durham said he’s added speed and shooting to his arsenal since his last stint here in 2014 with the now defunct Barako Bull where he averaged 25.5 points, 23.0 rebounds, 6.0 assists, 1.75 blocks.
“Since then, I trimmed down my weight, so I’m not as big and bulky, I’m little bit quicker. I’ve been working on my shot a little bit more also,” he said. – By Jason Mercene
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