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Road Warriors to field Simmons vs Bossing


After having trouble with his previous club in China, Jonathon Simmons will see action when NLEX opens its campaign against Blackwater in the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Frankie Lim made the confirmation to Daily Tribune, saying that the former National Basketball Association standout will see action despite failing to secure his clearance from his club in the Chinese Basketball Association.

Simmons is probably the most decorated import to see action in the season-ending conference.

Despite getting undrafted in the NBA in 2012, the 33-year-old forward still had memorable stints with the San Antonio Spurs, Orlando Magic and Philadelphia 76ers.

In 2020, he brought his talent to Asia in which he suited for the Liaoning Flying Leopards before campaigning for the Shanxi Loongs in the CBA last year.

A reliable Daily Tribune source said the Loongs refused to issue his clearance while offering him an “NBA value” amount of money.

Although the Road Warriors made an appeal and offered to release Simmons after a month, the Loons still turned it down as they want to Simmons to play for them right away.

But in the end, the Road Warriors prevailed.

“Simmons will play,” Lim said in a short message to Tribune.

“We’re still processing (his release). (NLEX team manager) Larry (Fonacier) will be the one to inform the PBA that he will play for us tomorrow. I’m not sure if he already informed them.”

Tribune tried but Fonacier has yet to issue a statement.

Still, whether Simmons will play or not, Blackwater will be ready.

Bossing head coach Ariel Vanguardia said they will stick to their game plan knowing that the Road Warriors will have new faces in Sean Anthony and Jake Pascual, who were acquired in the trade package that included Justin Chua and Paul Varilla last week.

“They have new players so we don’t know their impact on NLEX,” Vanguardia said, adding that his key players are pumped up to open their campaign.

“Finally, Baser (Amer), Jayvee (Casio), and (Joshua) Torralba will play. Soon, probably next week, Troy Rosario will play. That’s why our battle cry this conference is ‘All-in!’”

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