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Ginebra sends Yeo to Barako for Mercado

MANILA, Philippines - A trade has taken place the day before the opening of the PBA Governors' Cup between Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and the Barako Bull Energy, it was reported on Monday, May 4.

In the deal, Ginebra will send swingman Joseph Yeo to Barako Bull in exchange for combo guard Sol Mercado.

Yeo was acquired by the Gin Kings prior to the PBA season and in 24 games with the team averaged 9.2 points and 2.9 rebounds a contest.

The former De La Salle star is expected to start for the Energy and make an immediate impact. The team has made the playoffs in each of the last two conference, bowing out both times to the Talk 'N Text Tropang Texters in the quarterfinals.

This will be Mercado's fourth team this season. The explosive guard played for both the San Miguel Beermen and GlobalPort Batang Pier in the Philippine Cup and for the Energy in the Commissioner's Cup.

This season, Mercado is putting up 8.6 points and 3.6 assists a game.

The Mercado-Yeo swap marks the third time Barako Bull and Ginebra have been involved in a trade over the past few weeks.

Ginebra sent seldom-used players Dylan Ababou and James Forrester to Barako Bull for their 2015 first round draft pick in March. A few weeks later, both squads were part of a 4-team deal that saw 6 big men change teams.

Mercado adds another ball-dominant guard for the Ginenbra, who already have Mark Caguioa. It's unclear yet how new head coach Frankie Lim envisions his team's offense, but many of Ginebra's fans hoped it will revolve more around big men Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar, and less run-and-gun.

Whether or not Mercado starts remains a question. If he's to come off the bench, he could be the main playmaker of the squad's second unit.

Like the Energy, Ginebra has been eliminated from the quarters in each of the past two conference.

Yeo will compete for minutes against guys like RR Garcia, Forrester, JC Intal, and Ababou, among others. But his experience and talents should have him play the most minutes from Barako's guards. – Rappler.com