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Beermen abort McCullough hiring

San Miguel Beer stepped on the brakes and aborted its plan of hiring Chris McCullough for the East Asia Super League Champions Week in Japan in March.

San Miguel Beer team manager Gee Abanilla said they had a change of heart as McCullough has yet to fully recover from a knee injury.

A former National Basketball Association player, McCullough tore his anterior cruciate ligament on 14 May while playing for New Taipei against Taoyuan in the P. League+ — the professional basketball league in Taiwan.

“He’s supposed to play for us in the EASL, but he isn’t sure yet on his recovery from injury,” wrote Abanilla in a text message to Daily Tribune.

McCullough is no stranger to the Beermen system.

Listed at 6-foot-10, he keyed San Miguel’s title run in the 2019 Commissioner’s Cup of the Philippine Basketball Association in which he averaged 32.4 points, 15.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.3 steals and 2.4 blocks per game.

His solid performance made him one of the candidates for naturalization as he was seriously considered to play for Gilas Pilipinas together with another former NBA player in Terrence Jones.

Although the news of McCullough’s possible return already circulated on social media, Abanilla stressed that they already decided to take a different direction.

Aside from McCullough, another import who was also been considered to play for the Beermen in the EASL was Marcus Weathers. In the EASL, teams are allowed to field in two imports.

San Miguel and TNT, the top two teams in the Philippine Cup this season, will represent the PBA in the EASL.

Weathers was supposed to reinforce San Miguel late last year in the EASL, but the Champion’s Week was pushed back to early 2023.

Playing in his first professional league, Weathers was brought in as early as the Commissioner’s Cup in the middle of San Miguel’s campaign and was ready to play in the season-ending tournament set 22 January.

But San Miguel also changed its mind and opted to bring in returning import Cameron Clark, who first saw action for NLEX in last season’s Governor’s Cup.

The Beermen released their rights on Weathers, who will now see action for NorthPort.

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