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Tiebreaker Times

Hoop Nut One-on-One: What if you were Sol Mercado?

While watching Game 3 of the PBA Philippine Cup finals between the San Miguel Beermen and the Alaska Aces, the Hoopnut tag team can’t help but wonder about the current mindset of former Elasto Painter, former Bolt, former Beerman, former Batang Pier (twice) and current Barako Bull Energy player Solomon Mercado.

Enzo Flojo 9:00pm
Kung ikaw si Sol Mercado, mananapak ka na ba sa pikon dahil puro trade na lang ng trade sa iyo?

Rolly Mendoza 9:30pm
Well, you can look at a trade in two ways. The team that gave him away does not want or need him anymore but there’s a chance that the team getting Sol Mercado actually wants him.

Sol should keep his cool for now especially if he gets more minutes but if he sits on the bench, then maybe it’s time to make some noise.

Enzo Flojo 10:16pm
But this is a guy who has been traded in perpetuity and has been bounced around by both the SMC & MVP groups and is now getting shipped to one of the league’s worst teams (hello, Barako fans, wherever you are). Frankly speaking, if I were Sol, professionalism aside, I’d feel a little more than miffed. At this point in his career, it would be tremendously beneficial for him to find a home for the long haul.

Rolly Mendoza 10:30pm

Barako-Farm Hoop Nut One-on-One: What if you were Sol Mercado?  - philippine sports news

Bull farm? SMC farm? Bull _ _ _ _?

Some say that Barako Bull is actually a “farm team” for the SMC group so Mercado is still within the grasp of those teams. Hehe!

However, one has to wonder why Mercado has been traded so often in the past couple of years. What is the reason for teams bailing on him?

Is it his work ethic? His attitude? His professionalism? I have no idea why teams keep trading him.

This I know for sure, teams are not trading him due to lack of talent and skill.

Enzo Flojo 10:41pm
Barako as a farm team is a thinly-veiled fact. Come on. Who are they kidding, right? I don’t really question Sol’s personality and professionalism, though I think his long range game is a big question mark. It’s not that he doesn’t have an outside game. It’s just that he’s not consistent. Maybe that’s why?

Rolly Mendoza 10:52pm
Mercado-Cabagnot Hoop Nut One-on-One: What if you were Sol Mercado?  - philippine sports news
I do agree that his three-point shooting needs a lot of work. The last two players that got traded for him (Cabagnot and Miranda) have better range than him but Mercado is a much better slasher than those two.

On the consistency issue, I think part of that has to be Mercado’s dedication to team ball and defense. I do believe he has the skills to be an excellent defender but that remains to be seen.

Enzo Flojo 11:13pm
I think Mercado is too far into his career already to redefine his game e. Defense has never been his calling card, and I don’t think it ever will be. He’s on the floor really to score and make plays for his teammates. That’s it. In the end, though, if you were Sol, how would you feel given how he has been shipped from one club to the next? It’s a good thing, then, that the teams aren’t geographically-based. Otherwise, that’s another headache Sol would have had to consider.

Rolly Mendoza 11:27pm
Well, if he wants to last longer and play more minutes in the PBA, Mercado needs to add more to his game. It was evident that his scoring skills were not needed with SMB and GlobalPort so a different approach might have worked.

In any case, Barako will be a fresh start for him and hopefully he is ready to show us what else he can do!

To close, here’s an inspirational tweet from Sol Mercado himself
Good luck Sol Train!

*Sol Mercado (Globalport) image by Nuki Sabio of PBA Images

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