On paper, the addition of Dylan Ababou to the Barako Bull Energy gives the team added threat on offense and youth. Ababou spaces the floor effectively, and is a reliable perimeter defender as well, however, none of those matters unless he actually gets to play on the floor.
Prior to the Energy’s match against the NLEX Road Warriors Wednesday at the Mall of Asia Arena [READ: McMorrow, Intal shine as Barako Bull escapes second half NLEX flurry], Ababou played only a total of 30 minutes in six games for Barangay Ginebra.
He was used sparingly, and was also scoreless in all contests.
Good thing for the fourth year wing man, Head Coach Koy Banal knows exactly what he can bring to the squad, which drafted him four seasons ago.
“Hindi niyo alam paano magtrabaho yan,” Banal praised the 6-foot-2 wing man after the match, giving him even more confidence.
“I feel at home. ‘Yung ibang teammates ko andito pa rin. Happy ako na after tatlong surgery nakalaro pa ako. I seize this moment na makapaglaro ulit,” Ababou shared, delighted to make his presence felt again by basketball fans.
Ababou played a total of 25:24, scored 12 in the first half alone, and wounded up with 16 points on 4-for-7 shooting, and was a plus-19 on the floor.
His performance was reminiscent of his MVP year in University of Santo Tomas and appearance for Smart-Gilas I, showcasing firepower and the ability to take charge in crucial stretches.
After all the injuries he suffered in the past, Ababou is just grateful to be able to return and still convince observers with his play.
“Narasanan ko na lahat eh so kung may mangyari man, parang wala na lang. Kumbaga I’ve been through worse so, go hard talaga. Mina-maximize ko ang talent na binigay sa akin,” he shared.
With an inspiring Governors’ Cup opener, Ababou says he is looking forward to more.
“Looking forward talaga. Kailangan pa matuto ng marami at mag-improve. Wala naman akong dapat i-prove. Thankful lang ako at hindi ko lang sasayangin ang second chance.”