Friday, August 16, 2013

San Mig Coffee acquires Allein Maliksi as James Yap struggles

SAN Mig Coffee Mixers is set to acquire Allein Maliksi in a trade with Barako Bull to widen its scoring options in the PBA Governors Cup, especially with superstar James Yap continuing to struggle from the floor.

San Mig Coffee Mixers Allein Maliksi James Yap

Team insiders revealed on Friday that San Mig has agreed a deal that would enable them to get Maliksi from Barako Bull in exchange for veteran forward Wesley Gonzales and guard Chris Pacana.

At posting time, the trade papers were on the way to the PBA Commissioner's Office for approval, the source added.

The trade marks another major turn in the career of Maliksi, a former University of Santo Tomas mainstay who just last January was sent by Barangay Ginebra to Barako Bull in a multi-team trade that also involved Mac Baracael.

Maliksi has seen little action for Barako Bull owing to knee problems but San Mig is hoping the athletic swingman can add a new dimension to the Mixers' offense once healthy.

The deal was in fact fast-tracked a day before the Mixers' second game of the PBA Governors Cup against Air21 Express on Saturday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

Team insiders said San Mig had been looking to boost its arsenal since the semifinal series against Alaska in the Commissioner's Cup, which saw the Mixers' offense struggle with Yap limited by a back injury and PJ Simon unable to step up as the team's primary scoring option.

Yap, a two-time league MVP, is back in top shape for the Governors Cup but continues to misfire, making just one of 14 shots in the 75-79 loss to Rain or Shine on Wednesday. (For full story on Yap's struggles, see

Maliksi was rushing to join San Mig's practice on Friday morning at posting time, but had time to post on his Twitter account @alleinmaliksi: "I want to be like Gary David...bring your own team to the top!"

On the other hand, Gonzales is set to reunite with fellow Ateneo alumni Rico Villanueva, Eman Monfort, and JC Intal at Barako Bull while Pacana will most likely back up Jonas Villanueva at the point guard position.

UPDATES: Approved trades as of August 16, 2013: 1. Barako Bull acquired the rights to WESLEY GONZALES and CHRIS PACANA plus San Mig Coffee's 2017 2nd Rd draft pick; 2. San Mig Coffee acquired the rights to ALLEIN MALIKSI.


Moments after a trade that sent Allein Maliksi to San Mig Coffee for hardly used players Wesley Gonzales and Chris Pacana, Alaska coach Luigi Trillo went to Twitter to post his frustrations over what he feels was a lopsided trade.

“Best Barako talent Maliksi for bench players Gonzales and Pacana? Are you kidding me? Maliksi is the best player on that Barako team,” wrote Trillo on his Twitter account.

On Friday, the PBA approved the trade that sent Maliksi to the Coffee Mixers for Gonzales, Pacana and a 2017 second round pick of San Mig Coffee.

The move didn’t sit well for Trillo, whose led Alaska to the Commissioner’s Cup crown.

“Would you trade James Yap for Bulawan and Celino Cruz? Cannot see the logic in letting a talent like Maliksi go,” added Trillo.

Neither Gonzales nor Pacana played in the Mixers’ game last Wednesday against Rain or Shine.

Trillo’s also commented on a series of lopsided trades at the expense of Barako Bull, including one prior to the start of the season where the Mixers traded starting point guard Josh Urbiztondo for a draft pick originally belonging to GlobalPort. With the Batang Pier’s record, the pick is expected to be first and second overall in the next draft.

“I love Urbiztondo’s game, but why would Barako get Urbiztondo and miss out on a chance to acquire a (Greg) Slaughter, (Ray) Parks or (Ian) Sangalang,” wrote Trillo.

Urbiztondo had a pit stop with Barako Bull, but was traded to the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel last conference.

“Am I bitter? No I’m not just impressed at how teams find ways to strengthen their lineups, quite shocked at Barako’s trades. Sad,” added Trillo.

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