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Balkman leaves Alab, replaced by NBA G-Leaguer Nick King
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Balkman leaves Alab, replaced by NBA G-Leaguer Nick King

MANILA, Philippines, November 8 ------ It seems that Renaldo Balkman’s redemption tour in the ASEAN Basketball League has been put on hold. According to Alab Pilipinas team owner Charlie Dy, the 2018 ABL Defensive Player of the Year and one-time champion has begged off from team duties due to a “family matter.” “Yes, Balkman left tonight and Nick King is arriving also tonight,” Dy said in a message to Rappler.

Like Balkman, the 24-year-old King got a taste of NBA action although only at the developmental level. After short stints with the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics in the NBA Summer League, the 6-foot-7 forward was picked up by the NBA G-League’s Celtics affiliate Maine Red Claws before he signed with Alab. The Middle Tennessee State product will provide much-needed firepower to a Jimmy Alapag-coached squad that has now lost Balkman and three-time Local MVP Ray Parks in the span of one off-season.

King averaged 21.2 points and 8.4 rebounds in his senior season with the Blue Raiders and was subsequently named the Conference USA Player of the Year. He now joins Adrian Forbes and Khalif Wyatt to complete Alab’s World Import trio. Alab now heads to the new season with the goal of returning to the ABL playoffs, where they were dethroned last year in a stunning sweep by Hong Kong Eastern. The Philippine club team kicks off its campaign against the Thailand Mono Vampire on November 17.

Source: rappler.com/sports