MANILA, Philippines – The Blackwater Elite has traded guard Brian Heruela to the Barako Bull Energy Cola in exchange for guard Carlo Lastimosa, the PBA’s official website confirmed on Thursday, July 2.
Heruela was one of the best rookies this past PBA season, averaging 10.6 points, 5.3 assists, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.5 steals a contest. Most of the time, he was the lone reliable local scoring option of the Elite in their underachieving first PBA season, where they went 4-29 overall.
Lastimosa was an impressive sparkplug off the bench for the Energy, averaging 7.8 points per game this past season. With Blackwater, the former CSB Blazer will get an opportunity to play more minutes seeing as the Elite lack talent at the guard position.
Heruela, meanwhile, will have to compete for playing time with RR Garcia, Paolo Hubalde, Chicago Lanete, and Joseph Yeo, assuming they all remain with the Energy coming into the next PBA season.
Barako Bull was recently eliminated in the quarterfinals of the Governors’ Cup against Rain or Shine. The team didn’t advance to the semifinals of any of the 3 conferences this PBA season.
“He was surprised,” Lastimosa’s agent, Charlie Dy, told Rappler about his player’s reaction to hearing he was dealt. “But he will accept it and be professional about it because trades are part of the game.”