Allein Maliksi asserted that he will always remain grateful to Blackwater in the two years he played there.
For the 32-year-old gunslinger, being with the Elite made him grow both as a basketball player and as an individual, which he said is something that no amount of money can match.
“Sa Blackwater, in two years ko na naglaro doon, hindi lang ‘yung money or ‘yung success yung nakuha ko eh. Nakuha ko ‘yung growth and maturity as a person and as a basketball player,” said the eighth-year pro out of University of Santo Tomas.
“‘Yung growth and maturity hindi mapapalitan ng money eh. So ‘yun ‘yung isa sa malaking nakuha ko when I was in Blackwater.”
Maliksi had to bid goodbye to Blackwater as last Friday, the team shipped him and Raymar Jose to the Meralco Bolts in exchange for KG Cañaleta, Mike Tolomia, and future second-round picks.
And just like most other players traded, he takes it positively. And he also sees it as a chance to further hone his game, especially now that he will be playing under decorated coach Norman Black.
‘I’m really excited about coach Norman,” said Maliksi, who has been traded for the second time in three years. “Parang rookie ka ulit eh. So every time na nate-trade ako, medyo sanay na.
“Pero ‘yun nga, it’s another opportunity for you to learn and to improve your game.”
Maliksi’s stint with Meralco went off to a good start, as the Bolts decimated the Grand Slam-seeking San Miguel Beermen, 125-99, in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup on Sunday night.
There, the 6-foot-4 swingman made his presence felt with 12 points, five rebounds, two assists, and a steal.
“Okay naman. Thankful na lang ako sa teammates ko kasi ‘yun nga, maganda ‘yung teamwork dito sa team. Hinahanap nila ako. Credit to my teammates and coaches,” said Maliksi.
Asked what his goals are now that he’s with Meralco — his fifth team in his pro career — Maliksi wants to savor a championship like he did with the Purefoods franchise years ago.
“Dito sa Meralco, gusto ko makapag-champion uli katulad nung nasa Purefoods franchise ako,” said Maliksi, who was part of the San Mig Coffee team that won the Grand Slam in 2014.
“And hopefully mabalik ko uli ‘yung game ko na nawala nung nasa Purefoods ako kasi medyo nag-struggle din talaga ako when I was in Blackwater. So ‘yun ‘yung focus ko right now, mag-improve ulit ‘yung game ko.”
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