San Miguel Alab Pilipinas’ newest veteran signing may have just improved their chances of retaking the title that they never got to defend after being ousted by Hong Kong Eastern in the quarterfinals. Point guard play was where Alab shined last season as they finished the regular season at the top of the league with 25 assists per game. In both playoff games against Eastern, they led in the assists category but they faltered in late-game execution.
Jason Brickman’s inclusion into this year’s Alab team serves to steady the ship in that regard. The former Mono Vampire skipper made his name in the league because of his ability to score timely baskets while making sure that everyone he’s on the floor with gets an opportunity to score the ball with relative ease, be it in the paint or elsewhere in the halfcourt.
The veteran guard usually makes highlights not as a scorer but as a passer. More than that, he’s one of the most well-rounded guards in the league.
Tam Dinh is a domestically famous Vietnamese-American who has wowed crowds with his highlight-reel worthy offense. The up-and-coming basketball star will finally join his country’s ABL representative team, the Saigon Heat.
In his last season in the Vietnamese domestic league, Tam Dinh finished with a record of 24.5 points per game and shooting 54.8% on the field making him the Most Valuable Player of the season. He’ll also have the opportunity to play with his brother, Sang Dinh, with the team hoping that they’ll both be the cornerstones of the Heat offense for this season.
Tam Dinh is one of the most explosive players coming from Vietnam and he’s most definitely looking to introduce himself to the followers of the league. His addition to the Saigon Heat will most definitely be a boost to their chances of making a solid playoff run this ABL season.
Joseph Lin is undeniably a must-watch talent in the tenth season of the ABL. Locking in the 23rd spot among ABL’s Top 30 players, Lin is out to prove to the league that he is not just a brother of NBA veteran and “Linsanity” himself, Jeremy Lin. The younger Lin may not be the flashiest athlete around, but his style of play speaks for itself as a solid option on the point guard position.
Lin’s first season was splendid as he dazzled the crowd with his speed, court vision, and a knack for smooth shooting. His rookie season was not a fluke, averaging 12.1 points and a league-high 4.4 assists—with the Rookie of the Year award and All-SBL First Team honors to cap it off. Later on, as his numbers progressed, so did his game. In their recent season in the SBL, Lin helped the team to gain the best record come postseason and was a rising star in their championship run—putting up 14.3 PPG and 5.3 APG in their four-game Finals sweep.
Despite the hype that surrounds, there are still concerns for him in his upcoming ABL debut. Will his game continue to flourish in a talent-stacked roster? Will his role for the team slowly diminish? How will he fare against ABL stalwarts this season? Although there may be high expectations for him due to his basketball lineage, he is undoubtedly ready to carve his name in the league.
The ABL Legend is not yet done even in his age 38 season as he makes his way to Vietnam to join the Saigon Heat. Charles has had a storied career thus far in the ABL and his accolades include a 2014 championship with Hi-Tech Bangkok City, two-time World Import MVP, and a three-time Defensive Player of the Year.
The Saigon Heat management chose to bring in three imports to reinforce their lack of depth in the frontcourt, with Chris Charles leading the way. The 7-foot-1 All-Time Ten honoree is expected to be the default leader of the team as his wealth of experience in the ABL will be a cornerstone to the Heat’s success. Despite his age, he’s still a nightly double-double threat as his ability to gobble up rebounds and score in the paint will free up the perimeter for the Heat’s young guards to make a play.
Though there are questions regarding his ability to stay healthy because of his age and history of injuries, it cannot be denied that Chris Charles is still a player that can contribute to the stat sheet and be an on-court leader for the Heat.
One of Taiwan’s most seasoned three-point shooters is ready to show his veteran presence in the ABL. Lin Chih-Chieh holds the record of being the first player to make 3,000 points in the domestic league of Taiwan.
The 6-foot-three shooting guard was named “The Beast” after his monster season in Taipei and he’s about to debut in the ABL as such. Being one of the most hyped players that’s about to enter the league, Lin Chih-Chieh is one of the most interesting players in this upcoming season of the ABL.
Since the start of his stint in the FIBA Asia Cup in 2003, he has already scored 462 points and will only look to add to that in future tournaments. The Taipei Fubon Braves have added one of the most feared scorers in Asia and he’s looking to bring that notoriety to the ABL.