“NO TRADE.” With those two words, in bold uppercase letters for emphasis, GlobalPort owner Mikee Romero ended all speculations about the fate of Terrence Romeo, the franchise’s face in the PBA.
Romero posted the message on his Facebook page recently accompanied by a YouTube clip of Romeo and slam-dunking rookie Lervin Flores.
Romeo, the top local scorer in the PBA for the past three seasons, was earlier rumored to be on the trading block, with Meralco showing a keen interest in getting the prolific guard. The report, first reported by the Inquirer on Nov. 7, said Romeo had requested the GlobalPort management to trade him to another team reportedly because of his desire to play for a championship-caliber team.
GlobalPort made the playoffs in the first two conferences of the 2016-2017 season, the Philippine Cup, and Commissioners’ Cup. However, the Batang Pier crashed out in the Governors’ Cup, ending the elimination round with a 3-8 win-loss record and putting to naught Romeo’s league-leading 23 points per game average for the season.
The Inquirer earlier reported that GlobalPort management had opened initial talks with Meralco for a possible trade wherein they would give up Romeo in exchange for Meralco’s Baser Amer and Chris Newsome.
However, Meralco coach Norman Black reportedly rejected the offer, not wishing to part with Newsome, the 2016 Rookie of the Year.
Another source said TNT initially sought Romeo but later declined to take him in exchange for 6’7” power forward Mo Tautuaa.
Prior to Romero’s curt Facebook message, GlobalPort had refused to comment on the rumored trade involving Romeo.
The Batang Pier opened training camp on Monday under new coach Pido Jarencio but Romeo has so far not attended practice at the Gatorade Hoops Center in Mandaluyong owing to a still unexplained injury. Romeo was also missing during the three-day Gilas training for the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers in Tagaytay, which ended on Wednesday.
During the last Philippine Cup, Romeo averaged 28.2 points per game, the highest scoring average in the last 25 seasons, according to chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III. For the entire 42nd season, Romeo normed 23.3 points, 5.5 assists and 3.7 rebounds per game.
Romeo has collected three scoring titles, one Mythical First Team selection, three-time All-Star, and two-time All-Star MVP.
He was also the top scorer for the Gilas squad that took part and placed seventh in the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup in Lebanon last August, averaging 17.8 points per game.
Romeo is also the first Asian to have a signature shoe with the Chinese brand Peak.