PBA: Magat returns to NLEX; McAloney, Ayonayon shipped to Blackwater


Posted at Nov 16 2021 11:59 AM

Big man Marion Magat (22) in action for Blackwater in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup. PBA Media Bureau.
Big man Marion Magat (22) in action for Blackwater in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup. PBA Media Bureau.

MANILA, Philippines -- Big man Marion Magat is back in NLEX, after the Road Warriors acquired him from the Blackwater Bossing in exchange for Will McAloney and Mike Ayonayon.

The PBA approved the trade on Tuesday.

Blackwater will also get NLEX's second round pick in the 2023 PBA Rookie Draft in the deal.

This is a homecoming for Magat, who played for NLEX in 2019 before being involved in a three-team trade that sent Jericho Cruz to the Road Warriors.

NLEX head coach and general manager Yeng Guiao said the move is meant to shore up their frontline.

"We were constantly looking for a big man and Marion has the size, plus the fact that he played for us before, it won't be much a problem when it comes to adjustment," said Guiao, as quoted by the NLEX website.

The 6-foot-7 Magat averaged 5.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 1.0 block per game for Blackwater in the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup.

He is expected to get plenty of playing time in NLEX, as big man Raul Soyud is set to miss the first few games of the 2021 PBA Governors' Cup while he recovers from knee surgery.

Guiao is also optimistic that in Blackwater, Ayonayon and McAloney will flourish.

"We also felt that with Blackwater, Mike and Will will have a chance to showcase their potential. Medyo nahihirapan silang maka-break in sa amin terms of playing time dahil sa mga kapuwestuhan nila," he admitted.

"I'm sure they'll be given more playing opportunities with Blackwater."

McAloney played just seven games for NLEX last conference, averaging 1.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game. Ayonayon, who was NLEX's first round pick in the 2019 draft, played five games, with averages of 0.4 point, 0.8 rebound, and 0.6 assist per game.

McAloney and Ayonayon are the latest additions to the Blackwater roster, as the Bossing have been retooling their squad after a historically poor campaign that saw them lose all 11 of their games in the Philippine Cup.

They had previously added Jayvee Casio and Barkley Ebona from Alaska, and Rashawn McCarthy from Terrafirma.