Minus June Mar Fajardo and Greg Slaughter, NLEX's Poy Erram could well be among the big men to watch in the coming PBA Philippine Cup, especially with his avowed desire to make up for his costly misconduct in his last game last season.
Erram has definitely come of age, joining the league's roll of A-listers at least in the last three years starting in 2017 marked by his inclusion in the Philippine team to the Jakarta/Palembang Asian Games.
The 6-foot-7 center out of Ateneo was a key member of the NLEX core group that carried the team to a first-place finish in the last Governors Cup eliminations. But then he got involved in a scuffle resulting to an ejection and suspension that caused him to miss a do-or-die game that they lost in a painful early exit in the post-elims play versus NorthPort.
Even then, Erram landed in the Top 25 in the season's stats race. He came at 22nd, barely missing the Top 20 - the candidates for the Mythical Selection in the coming Leo Awards.
In 2018, he gained Mythical Second Team citation and drew the nod of the PBA Press Corps as the Defensive Player of the Year.
The 30-year-old Makati City native could well enjoy continued great ride in the coming season especially with an inside-the-paint competition against lesser kind sans Fajardo and Slaughter.
Last campaign, Erram normed 11.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.1 blocks and 1.8 assists.
But first, Erram wants atonement for his misdeed.
He has apologized and vowed to learn from his mistakes.
"This is on me. I promise you this will be the last of my unnecessary actions and I'll do my best to earn back your trust," said Erram on his Twitter.
The coming Philippine Cup could well be a good opportunity for Erram to rise and shine.
Other big men to watch in the absence of Fajardo and Slaughter are NorthPort's Christian Standhardinger, Magnolia's Ian Sangalang, San Miguel Beer's Moala Tautuaa and Meralco's Raymond Almazan. (SB)