MANILA, Philippines -- Kelly Nabong will try to revive his career once again with the NorthPort Batang Pier, after being traded from San Miguel last January.
Nabong, in an appearance on "Extra Rice with Beau Belga," expressed his disappointment at how his stint with the Beermen ended but remained optimistic that he can redeem himself with the Batang Pier.
"It was a tough situation, because San Miguel is a great team, a great company and all that," said the Filipino-American big man. "It was a bad situation, but on the brighter side, I'm still able to play basketball professionally, and I'm still in the PBA."
"And I'm on a team that I know," he added. "That's the best out of the worst situation that I can get."
Nabong was part of San Miguel's championship teams in the 2019 PBA All-Filipino Cup and Commissioner's Cup, but was given an indefinite suspension in November 2019 for his role in a scuffle in practice with then-import Dez Wells, Arwind Santos, and Ronald Tubid.
All three locals were sanctioned, while Wells was replaced, and San Miguel eventually made a quarterfinal exit in the Governors' Cup to end another Grand Slam bid. Nabong was traded two months after the incident.
He is grateful to have landed in NorthPort, a team that he's played on twice before. Nabong said he loves his new teammates, particularly the younger guys such as Kevin Ferrer and Robert Bolick.
"We have a real young core, guys are real hungry and they want to prove themselves," he said. "And we got a lot of good vets -- Sean (Anthony), Christian (Standhardinger) is there. Coach Pido (Jarencio), I mean, that's a great coach."
While the PBA remains on hold because of the novel coronavirus pandemic, Nabong said they have already set a goal for themselves.
"Last conference, they made it to the semis," he said. "So the goal is to make it to the semis and push past it."
Watch Belga and Nabong's whole conversation here:
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website).