Rain or Shine is set to get an extra boost as it welcomes the return of gunner Gian Mamuyac and import Greg Smith when it faces Magnolia on Wednesday in the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup.
Elasto Painters coach Yeng Guiao made the confirmation to Daily Tribune, saying that they are bracing for the return of the two key players who can help them advance to the playoffs.
“Gian should be available for next game,” Guiao said moments after leading the import-less Elasto Painters to a 120-118 victory over Terrafirma last Thursday for their second consecutive win.
“Since it’s going to be on Wednesday, he (Mamuyac) still has enough time to recuperate. He’s been doing light- movement practices.”
Mamuyac suffered an ankle injury during the Elasto Painters’ game against TNT Tropang Giga on 27 January but has been sidelined since then and missed the previous games.
Aside from Mamuyac, another young player sidelined by an injury is Mike Nieto.
“As for Mike, it’s going to take some time,” Guiao added.
“His knee suffered from strained meniscus, so it would really take some time.”
Taking a near week-long break from active competition would also be a blessing for the Elasto Painters, who expect to have the documents of Smith available by then to allow him to play against the Hotshots.
Against the Dyip, Smith was barred from seeing action as the clearance he was expecting from the basketball federation of the last country he played in — the Dominican Republic — hasn’t been released yet to the International Basketball Federation.
Smith was able to play against Blackwater on Sunday pending the release of the Letter of Clearance, but Rain or Shine decided not to risk fielding him to avoid a hefty fine from FIBA.
As per FIBA guidelines, fielding an import without an LOC merits a penalty.
Guiao expects Smith’s papers would all be cleared in time for their game against Magnolia.
“It should be as soon as possible,” Guiao said.
“We will have to have that fixed. We have no problems using him at practice because he can practice, but our next game is on Wednesday so we need to have the documents cleared by Tuesday or earlier.”