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Tiebreaker Times


Mac Belo vows to make most of second chance given by ROS

ANTIPOLO – Mac Belo expressed his appreciation for the encouraging sentiments from fans online following his recent trade from Meralco to Rain or Shine.

Netizens and pundits alike believe that the 30-year-old forward could revive his career under Coach Yeng Guiao after the Elasto Painters acquired him, marking the end of his forgettable two-season stint with the Bolts.

“Nagpapasalamat pa rin ako kasi kahit papaano, marami pa rin ang nakaka-miss sa akin na maglaro,” said the former FEU star, who was traded in exchange for big man Norbert Torres in a straight-up swap.

“Excited na ako makalaro ulit.”

Belo has not played a PBA game since December 2, 2022, although conditioning isn’t an issue for the Midsayap native as he has been actively staying in shape through various activities aside from basketball, such as tennis.

“Babad araw,” he said with a chuckle. “‘Yun nga, laging babad sa araw kasi nung wala akong ginagawa, lagi lang ako naglalaro sa open park.”

However, Belo admitted that he is still getting into game shape. That’s why he and Guiao ultimately decided not to play him in their PBA On Tour match against Phoenix Super LPG on Friday night at the Ynares Center.

He did join his new team and watched from the sidelines, witnessing the Elasto Painters secure their second win with a 113-104 result.

“Ang inaano ko na lang ‘yung game shape,” said Belo, who has practiced twice with Rain or Shine.

“Kahit nung ‘di ako nakakapaglaro, actively maraming ginagawa. Ang kulang lang sa akin, ‘yung game shape.”

Guiao himself isn’t too concerned about Belo’s present form but said that “bulking him up” ahead of next season is part of the plan.

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“Ang sinasabi niya sa amin kaya siya nagpapayat, kasi ayaw niyang i-overload ‘yung likod niya,” he said, which explains why Belo appears leaner than before. “Ito pa ‘yung nung na-injure pa siya. So he tried to lessen his weight.

“Pero ang tingin ko ngayon, pwede na siguro magdagdag, maybe six to seven pounds of muscle but not fat. At least mas efficient ‘yung katawan niya kung muscle ang idadagdag niyang timbang. We’ll be working on that.”

Guiao is full of optimism about what Belo can bring to the table once he is ready, based on what he has seen in practice so far.

“‘Yung skills niya, andun pa,” the champion mentor said.

“‘Yung instincts niya, ‘yung decision-making niya. I feel na malaki maitutulong niya sa team.

‘”Yung skills na kailangan namin — ‘yung three-point shooting niya, and he can post up also, he can work with his back to the basket, he’s a good facilitator, he can defend. Ano lang, konting conditioning lang,” added Guiao.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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