Suleiman Braimoh made a strong impression when he carried Meralco to a 107-102 victory over Rain or Shine in the Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup late Wednesday at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.
Braimoh was very impressive, finishing with 34 points and 14 rebounds to give the Bolts their first win in the season-opening conference.
“It was fun,” said the 34-year-old journeyman who came in to replace original choice Feron Hunt.
“I enjoyed myself, I enjoyed my teammates because winning is always fun.”
For seven years, Meralco has been successful in tapping quality imports. From three-time Best Import awardee Allen Durham to Tony Bishop, crack reinforcements have been flying in to carry the Bolts to four trips to the finals.
Braimoh knows that the competition in the PBA is not easy so he has to be at his best.
“It will definitely be a challenge,” Braimoh said.
“You’ve got to be aggressive and you’re going to compete against teams using different schemes.”
“It was definitely a challenge and I’m looking forward to the rest of the season.”
New Meralco coach Luigi Trillo said bringing in Braimoh proved to be a logical decision.
Unlike Hunt, the highly-athletic, highly-touted player from the National Basketball Association G League is more of a blue-collar worker and he is relentless on both ends of the court.
Such energy displayed by Braimoh was contagious as the Bolts were also doing the same, knowing that their import is leading by example.
“It’s hard to find an import who plays solid on both ends of the court,” Trillo said.
“But the thing I’m really proud of him for his defense. You saw how he was able to set the tone for us.”