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Re-enter the dragon | Inquirer Sports

Re-enter the dragon

Myles Powell (No. 13) is ready to soar for the Dragons anew. —PBA IMAGES

The Bay Area Dragons have opted to go back with their high-scoring guard instead of sticking with their productive big man as reinforcement for the rest of their guest participation in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner’s Cup.

Myles Powell again takes the baton he previously handed to Andrew Nicholson as the Dragons begin a hectic weekend by climbing to Antipolo City to face the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters on Friday.

Bay Area made the change on the eve of the 3 p.m. match at Ynares Center as it hopes to see Powell display the same type of performance he put up earlier in the conference when he led the Hong Kong outfit to a perfect 4-0 start using a faster-paced game.

In putting back the 6-foot-2 guard, the Dragons can no longer field back Nicholson, the center who appeared in the last four matches where they went 2-2.

An arrangement with the PBA allowed Bay Area to play Powell for the first four games and Nicholson the next four before the team decides on which of the two will be the import moving forward.

Coach Brian Goorjian’s decision was made doubly hard when the East Asia Super League, which Bay Area was slated to play in and would have fielded Powell and Nicholson at the same time, was postponed to March 2023.

Nicholson returns to his previous role as cheerleader after capping off his stint with a 50-point showing in a 92-89 loss to Meralco exactly a week ago.

Meralco looks to capitalize on that win as import KJ McDaniels is expected to play another big role against Blackwater in the other match at 5:45 p.m. Another win and the Bolts, currently at 2-5, may make them start thinking of the possibility of sneaking into the playoffs.

Ynares will also host Saturday’s twinbill headlined by Magnolia’s quest for a seventh win in eight tries opposite Phoenix, which saw a five-game winning streak snapped at the hands of Converge, 132-127, last Wednesday.

That tips off following the 4:30 p.m. curtain-raiser which will see NorthPort attempting for back-to-back victories and solidifying its place inside the top eight against lowly Terrafirma, losers of 25 straight games.

Bay Area completes its busy stretch on Sunday with a 4:30 p.m. tussle with skidding NLEX at Smart Araneta Coliseum, while Converge guns for a seventh straight triumph against Rain or Shine at 6:45 p.m.

A win will keep Converge within striking distance of Magnolia, or even on top of the standings should the latter fall short against a Phoenix side which is eager for redemption after its streak was snapped.

Going into Friday, Magnolia is ahead at 6-1, followed by Converge (7-2), Bay Area (6-2) and Barangay Ginebra (5-2), while the middle to lower ranked teams are scrambling for positions to catch the quarterfinal bus.

Phoenix carries a 5-4 record, TNT and Rain or Shine hold similar 4-4 records, NorthPort is in eighth at 4-5, while San Miguel Beer (3-4) and NLEX (3-5) and struggling Blackwater (3-6) are ahead of Meralco. INQ

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