Cameroonian General Laminou not chasing after Oraeme, Akhuetie

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jun 15, 2016 04:53 PM
Cameroonian General Laminou not chasing after Oraeme
EYES ON THE PRIZE. Hamadou Laminou isn't worried about catching up with the individual achievements of Allwell Oraeme and Bright Akhuetie.

Allwell Oraeme won the NCAA’s MVP, RoY, and DPoY. Victor Nguidjol is now in the part of the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs. Bright Akhuetie and Prince Eze are the reasons why University of Perpetual Help remains a contender even with the loss of Scottie Thompson. Abdel Poutouochi played for playoff team Jose Rizal University.

Of all first-time foreign students in the NCAA a season ago, clearly, Emilio Aguinaldo College’s Hamadou Laminou experienced the least success.

Still, their dismal season did not diminish the Cameroonian’s belief in his squad. “Now, we have more experience to get into the Final Four,” he told ABS-CBN Sports.

The 21-year-old center came to the Philippines on recommendation of Cedric Noube Happi – once his teammate back in their native land who also happened to be EAC’s last impactful reinforcement. Happi was a former Mythical selection and the lone ray of light in what has been a long stretch of losing in UN Avenue.

Now entering his sophomore season, Laminou wants to emulate how his kababayan became the pillar for the Generals. Describing how exactly he would do it, he said, “I have made a lot of improvement – the most important (being) I improved my rebounding.”

He continued, “I was also a little injured at the end of the second round last year, but now, I feel really great.”

Don’t expect, however, for the Cameroonian to challenge Oraeme or Akhuetie for the title of the league’s best reinforcement just yet. As he put it, “Basketball is just trusting yourself and your teammates. So I’ll just trust my teammates.”

That doesn’t mean, however, that the six-foot nine-inch center can’t best his counterparts in adopting the Filipino culture – especially now that the most Filipinized foreign student in Ola Adeogun is no longer in the NCAA. In fact, when asked if he knew how to speak Tagalog, he answered, “Siyempre!”

He was quick to add, however, “Konti lang. Basic Tagalog.”

Nonetheless, Laminou said he is only getting better and better – on and off the court – as he heads into his third year in the Philippines. As he put it, “I’m great and only getting better every year.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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