Marqus Blakely is coming off a disappointing tour of duty with the Blackwater Elite, his 3rd team in the PBA after TNT and Magnolia.
All in all, the 31-year old American has had seven stints in the league, five with the Magnolia franchise and one each with TNT and Blackwater.
Of the five stints with his mother team, two resulted in championships – the 2013 and 2014 Governors’ Cup. The first and the last of 4 straight titles by the then San Mig Coffee Mixers which included a rare Grand Slam – the last of only five accomplished in the league since its inception in 1974.
The last stint, however, happened during the 2016 edition and didn’t turn out well as he was replaced by Joel Wright in the middle of the elimination round. The team eventually crashed out of the playoff race after losing 6 of its 7 games with Wright in tow.
He was then picked up by the KaTropa during the 2018 edition but failed to lead his new team past the elimination round.
With the Elite, the one-time Best Import awardee played in a total 10 games and the team finished in last place with an overall record of 2-9. He posted decent averages of 18 points, 13.1 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 3.5 steals and 2.9 blocks.
“Well, it’s definitely a situation where I haven’t been in. But at the same time, I think it’s growing pains. Winners will never know how to win without losing. I think that’s something that we can take away from this conference,” said Blakely.
“There’s been a lot of close games that we’ve mentally collapsed and haven’t played 48 minutes. Here, it was the last minute of the game where we fought back and fought hard and ended up short-handed in coming away with the win. I think that’s one thing as a team we have to understand that we gotta learn. It’s the mental health, the mental capability to close out games,” he added.
When asked what team he would like to play for if given another chance in the league, Blakely replied with a hint.
“Making me choose favorites, huh? I’m not gonna choose a specific team *coughs* Magnolia *coughs* but, you know, whatever happens, happens and hopefully I can come back here in the PBA and play,” he said and then laughed.