February 28, 2024

In search of home: 3 teams PBA free agent Jeron Teng could be perfect for

In search of home: 3 teams PBA free agent Jeron Teng could be perfect for
Art by Royce Nicdao

Jeron Teng has been a double-digit scorer practically his entire PBA career, averaging 10.3 points in five seasons. Add to that 5.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 0.5 steal a game and you have a player that can sure help any big league team.

And yet here is Teng, without a team just a couple of weeks until the start of Season 48. Of course, him being an unrestricted free agent probably has more to do with contractual gymnastics and less about Teng’s actual game—and the things he can contribute as a basketball player.

With that being said, Teng at the end of the day is still a pretty good hooper—and one who is in his athletic prime or about to enter it. That is why he will probably find a PBA team between now and opening day that would be willing to take a chance on the former La Salle Green Archer. And while we have no idea which team that will be, we do know three teams that just make perfect sense for the 6-foot-2 wing man.

Terrafirma Dyip

Terrafirma needs talent regardless of position, period. But with the team’s backcourt all but set with Juami Tiongson and Stephen Holt, the top overall pick of the 2023 PBA Draft, a slashing wing like Teng would certainly be a nice addition to the rebuilding Dyip, who also added highly touted big Kemark Carino.

And with five-man lineups featuring Tiongson, Holt, Teng, Aldrech Ramos, and Eric Camson, the ex-Converge FiberXer will have plenty of space to attack as he will be surrounded by four snipers from rainbow country. Maybe that quintet can finally be good enough to push the Dyip from mediocre to at least league average.

NorthPort Batang Pier

NorthPort used the PBA on Tour to search for Robert Bolick’s replacement, and Arvin Tolentino made a strong case. But he is more of a shooter at this point than a bona fide shot-maker. Enter Teng, who might not be as prolific and as gifted as Bolick but is a scoring option nonetheless. At the very least, he can be the Batang Pier’s go-to option as Tolentino transitions from three-point sniper to shot creator.

What’s more, Bonnie Tan can play Teng with the 6-foot-5 Tolentino and the 6-foot-4 Joshua Munzon, effectively negating the former UAAP champion’s size disadvantage, particularly on defense. Not to mention, having someone who can create his own offense might be the key to finally unlocking the full potential of Munzon, the first overall pick of the 2021 PBA Draft who has so far failed to live up to lofty expectations.

Blackwater Bossing

Like Terrafirma, Blackwater needs help pretty much at every position except point guard, where the team has JVee Casio, Baser Amer, Mike DiGregorio, and Trevis Jackson. That means Teng can fit right in as a much-needed albeit undersized wing.

And, as in Terrafirma, having shooters like Casio, Amer, DiGregorio, Jackson, and even Rey Suerte and Rashawn McCarthy can give Teng the openings he needs to make plays as a slasher and shot -maker.

Of course, none of this means Teng is headed to any of these teams. Then again, one of them might just look to give Teng a chance. Or maybe another will swoop in to grab him. 

(CF)