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Victolero to prioritize defense as Star begins post-James Yap era

Paul Lee is expected to carry the void left by James Yap. (file photo)

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--The Purefoods franchise is never the same again since the trade that sent pillar James Yap away from the club.

But for new coach Chito Victolero, the team currently known as the Star Hotshots can easily move on.

"This team is very successful. They have an impressive attitude and they know how to bounce back. They've already felt the highs and the lows, so it's now up to them where they want to be this year," Mahindra's former lead assistant coach, who took over Jason Webb as Star's new gaffer, said.

For the Hotshots got back to their winning form, Victolero proposed a solution.

"We just have to put them on the proper mindset that playing defense as our priority," he, on behalf of his entire coaching staff, said.

Paul Lee, the one who was exchanged for Yap, is expected to be the new key guy for Star as he joins reliable veterans PJ Simon, Marc Pingris, and Mark Barroca.

Also joining the team are rookies Jio Jalalon and Chris Javier and returnee Aldrech Ramos, who found himself back with the Purefoods squad after a trade on Thursday.

[Related Story: Mahindra gets busy in transfer window, gets four players from separate swaps]

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno