PBA: Why Phoenix is a perfect fit for Johnathan Williams? If the PBA’s height requirement is changed, Dwight Howard hopes to play

Jan 11, 2024

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Johnathan Williams, an import for Phoenix Super LPG, is a major factor in the team’s success in this conference.

Through ten PBA Commissioner’s Cup games, the Missouri and Gonzaga graduate, who experienced brief spells with the Los Angeles Lakers and Washington Wizards, is averaging 27.6 points, 15.8 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks for Phoenix.

Williams excelled once more on Wednesday, scoring 19 points in a 93-83 victory over Meralco to help the Fuel Masters advance to the quarterfinals with a twice-to-beat advantage (win-loss record of 8-2).

It is evident to the players why Williams fits in well with the group.

Williams had his lowest offensive output of the conference on Wednesday, but he more than made up for it off the glass, pulling down 15 rebounds to record another double-digit statistical performance.

Williams further impressed against Barangay Ginebra, the reigning champion, grabbing a conference-high 23 rebounds.

He was still very good even in the losses. He scored 37 points against San Miguel last Christmas, which was second-most in the conference, and shot 15 of 18 from the field, which was his best shooting performance of the season.

Williams “simplifies our work.”

Jason Perkins concurs that Williams has had a significant impact on the squad and expresses the hope that his performance in this conference will eventually earn him recognition.

If Phoenix plays deep in this division, a Best Import trophy for Williams might actually be a possibility.

Meanwhile, Dwight Howard, who stands 6-foot-10 in shoes, said it would be important for him to play in the PBA eventually.

Howard asserts that he is within the height restriction, but he still hopes the PBA will change its rules to allow more elite imports to play in the league. “I’m eligible for the PBA so I think they gotta change the height requirement,” Howard stated.

“I’m 6-foot-9 without shoes. And with shoes, it adds a little inch. So hopefully they do that (change the height limit) so guys like Dray [Blatche] can come back here and play as well,” he added.

“Twin Towers” in the near future?

Howard did not explicitly state that he intended to play in the PBA, but he did hint at a potential second partnership as the league’s next “twin towers” with Blatche, a big man for Strong Group Athletics (SGA).

For the time being, however, Blatche and Howard will shortly team up as the tallest stars in the SGA for the 33rd Dubai International Basketball Championship, which begins on January 19.

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