There are a lot of interesting storylines for each team as we open another PBA season on Sunday, March 8. Several ESPN5.com writers covering the league examine and look at the different PBA teams, highlighting the storyline for each, heading into the 2020 Philippine Cup.
The 2020 PBA season can be considered the continuation of Rain or Shine's evolution as a team with the influx of more young players through the Rookie Draft in December.
It's been close to four years since the Elasto Painters won their last PBA title under former coach Yeng Guiao. Since then, the management and the coaching staff, led by Caloy Garcia, have been finding ways to end the title drought. By looking at the team's 2020 season roster, it seems like the Elasto Painters are a step towards the right direction.
Additions: Ryan Arana (free agent pick up), Adrian Wong (rookie), Prince Rivero (rookie), Vince Tolentino (rookie), Clint Doliguez (rookie)
Subtractions: Ed Daquioag, JJay Alejandro
Holdovers: Sidney Onwubere, Gabe Norwood, Rey Nambatac, Javee Mocon, Kris Rosales, Jewel Ponferrada, Mark Borboran, James Yap, Norbert Torres, Beau Belga, Chris Exciminiano (injured)
Rain or Shine got younger with the entry of rookies Adrian Wong, Prince Rivero, Vince Tolentino and Clint Doliguez in the offseason. The four incoming freshmen join Rey Nambatac and Javee Mocon in the franchise's thrust to bring in more dynamism and youth.
Undoubtedly, the addition of these young players inject youth and energy for a team that in previous seasons have consistently been a semifinalist at the very least.
Biggest question: How far will Rain or Shine go with the influx of young talent?
Caloy Garcia is convinced that the team got a number of rookie "gems" in Wong, Doliguez, Tolentino and Rivero.
Wong is known as a two-way player, noted for his defensive spunk. He's also a solid 3-point gunner after averaging 36% shooting from beyond the arc in Ateneo's three-peat UAAP title run this past season. Doliguez, on the other hand, left his collegiate career on a high note even though San Beda failed to annex a fourth straight NCAA men's basketball crown last season.
Tolentino and Rivero, meanwhile, are two hungry big men, who have good mentors in Belga and Ponferrada as far as learning how to play tough inside the paint.
Although the Elasto Painters' youngsters will need some seasoning due to their inexperience playing, Rain or Shine still remains a dangerous bunch. The presence of veterans Gabe Norwood, Beau Belga, James Yap and returning guard Ryan Arana will definitely provide stability and leadership.