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UAAP: Kean Baclaan to boost DLSU’s guard position

by Bryan Gadingan

ANOTHER talented guard has returned to De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Archers, as former National University (NU) Bulldogs standout Kean Baclaan announced his move.

Baclaan confirmed his entry to the green-and-white community on Saturday, February 3, via an X (formerly Twitter) post, following a month-long speculation that he was transferring to another school. 

Baclaan previously played for De La Salle Zobel in the UAAP Juniors and was the team’s go-to player. 

This will be a memorable homecoming for the now-former NU star guard, who will be able to cap his collegiate career in the place where it all began.

Baclaan got the opportunity to explore his options after graduating from DLSZ by playing for the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Growling Tigers during the off-season in the PBA D-League and Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup.

The 5-ft-8 juggernaut then chose to play with the Bulldogs because of “better opportunities due to their lack of point guards.” Baclaan went on to play an important role in NU’s consecutive bronze-medal finishes.

He had the team’s second-best average statline of 10.6 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 4.4 assists while playing 24:50 minutes per game, trailing only NU’s leading scorer Jake Figueroa.

Baclaan and NU entered the Final Four last season as the third seed with a 10-4 record, but were defeated by the raging Kevin Quiambao-led La Salle, which was on a winning streak at the time.

Baclaan will be the second high-profile guard to return home following Jacob Cortez, who revealed his transfer a few weeks ago. Once eligible for Season 88, both guards are expected to strengthen DLSU’s backcourt.

Meanwhile, Baclaan was delighted to share the court with his fellow star guard, saying that it will help him alleviate his guard duties knowing how good a player Cortez is.

“Knowing Jacob naman, sobrang taas ng IQ niya sa loob ng court. For me, magiging madali ‘yung trabaho kasi syempre knowing Jacob nga, magaling tska masarap siya kasama sa court, kaya gusto ko rin siya makasama maglaro,” said Baclaan, in an interview with Tiebreaker Times.

Photo Courtesy: Tiebreaker Times | Facebook

The 21-year-old guard will also play with his boyhood friend and fellow Bayanan, Muntinlupa native Quiambao, who will be in his fourth year of UAAP eligibility if he still plays for Taft.

Syempre sobrang saya, tapos excited din, ‘yung mga teammates ko before makakasama ko like sila CJ (Austria), sila Kevin (Quiambao), si Raven (Cortez), and si Rhyle (Melencio),” he added.

Isa rin sa reason bakit gusto kong bumalik sa La Salle sa sistema ni Coach Topex (Robinson). Kumbaga, nakita ko ‘yung mga laro nila Nelle tsaka Nonoy lumabas. So excited ako sa sistema ni coach.” 

Baclaan will serve a one-year residence before being able to play for the Taft-based team. Indeed, this will strengthen the already formidable title group managed by Robinson.



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