We continue the PBA Imports Fantasy Tournament, where we picked 24 imports from across eras and grouped them into two brackets, with eight seeded directly into the second round. The remaining 16 will duke it out in our online polls. Our writers will preview each match-up, and you get to vote for the winner here and on One Sports PH's Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts.
For the seventh match-up, Chuck Araneta gives us an overview on James Penny and Rob Dozier, two imports who won a championship in the PBA.
It's not every conference when a replacement import comes in right before the start of the playoffs, instantly gels with a new set of teammates, and leads them all the way to a championship. But that's the legacy that James Penny left the PBA when he debuted in the 2006 Fiesta Conference for Red Bull. He replaced erstwhile import Quemont Greer, and helped kick off an incredible run that saw them boot out the Alaska Aces in the quarterfinals, Barangay Ginebra in the semifinals, and finally the top-seeded Purefoods Chunkee Giants in the finals.
Though Marquin Chandler wound up winning Best Import of the Conference, it was Penny that had the last laugh, as he helped Red Bull under Yeng Guiao win its final title in franchise history. He brought an electric mix of athleticism, highlighted by dunks that extended to almost the free throw line, as well as a decent perimeter jumper that made him extremely tough to guard.
Though Penny was fruitless in his next stint with Red Bull, as well in two other conferences with the Coca Cola Tigers in 2009 and 2010, he will always he remembered as one of the most exciting imports in the PBA.
Rob Dozier suited up in the PBA during arguably the most turbulent period in the Alaska Aces' franchise history. They were a year removed from the departure of Tim Cone, which was felt by a disastrous season that saw the Aces struggling to find a new identity. The Aces were also making moves in the lineup, sending LA Tenorio to Barangay Ginebra and acquiring Jvee Casio. Oh, and a particular individual named Calvin Abueva was also set to make his debut with the team.
Dozier was the final piece of that puzzle. And though his game was never predicated on highlight reel plays, what the former Memphis Tiger did was provide reliable and stellar production on both ends of the floor. He was a workhorse who combined with Sonny Thoss to provide interior defense that made it very difficult to score on Alaska inside.
Dozier would lead the Aces to the finals, where they faced Barangay Ginebra and their behemoth of an import in Vernon Macklin. But Dozier, who was also crowned Best Import of the Conference in Game 3, outplayed his counterpart as Alaska wound up sweeping Ginebra in 3 games to pick up the 2013 Commissioner's Cup title.
Dozier would have subsequent stints with the Aces, and most recently the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters in 2019, but none of those were able to replicate his championship run with the Aces in 2013.
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