Bay Area will be full power in East Asia Super League

INJURED Bay Area import Andrew Nicholson vows to be ready with a promise of spewing hotter flames when the Dragons take their act to the East Asia Super League (EASL) in March after a tough campaign that went the full route in the just-concluded PBA Commissioner’s Cup.

The 6-foot-10 American said he’s nearing full recovery from a left ankle injury he suffered in the finals against champion Barangay Ginebra and should be able to suit up when the Dragons resume training later this month. Still here in the Philippines.

“It’s getting better. I’ve been walking already. Another week and I’m good to go,” said Mr. Nicholson after his bad fall in Game 3 of the championship series that reached a pinnacle Game 7 before a record crowd of 54,589 fans at the Philippine Arena this weekend.

Mr. Nicholson served as the alternating import of Bay Area, along with guard Myles Powell, in the elimination round before owning the role as the latter suffered a foot injury of his own entering the playoffs.

A 19th overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft, Mr. Nicholson averaged 38.5 points, 11.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists in the games he played prior to his injury for the Dragons, who eventually gambled on Mr. Powell for the last two games of the finals.

Mr. Nicholson said the entire PBA journey has only molded him and the entire Dragons to a whole different creature moving forward, especially after his all-out battles against the Filipino giants like June Mar Fajardo, Christian Standhardinger and Japeth Aguilar.

“I think we got better. We came here and that was our goal. That’s our main goal. It’s a good preparation for us and we’re looking forward to what we’re gonna have in the EASL,” added Mr. Nicholson as Bay Area revs up for the regional tilt slated on March 1 to 5 in Japan.

“We’re blessed to be a part of it. We’re grateful.”

Messrs. Nicholson and Powell never played together in the PBA as only one could suit up at once, explaining his confidence in what caliber they could potentially unleash in the EASL, where Philippine Cup champion San Miguel and runner-up TNT are also in as PBA bets.

“It will be interesting to see how other teams respond to having our full team play. We’re looking forward to that. It’s gonna be fun. The only times me and Myles have played together is in practice. It’ll be exciting what we can do together on the court at the same time and showcase what Bay Area Dragons are at 100 percent,” he concluded. — John Bryan Ulanday