Rain or Shine Elastopainters wear retro PBA jerseys in their victory over Converge in the PBA Philippine Cup. –PBA IMAGES

MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao couldn't help but admire the Elasto Painters' retro jerseys at the PBA Philippine Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday.

The team wore its usual dark blue color scheme, only this time, wearing the original Welcoat Dragons logo; the original name of the Elasto Painters when they joined the PBA in 2006.

For Guiao, seeing the classic logo presented by Anta printed on the team's shirts and the coaching staff's uniforms “was good” and showed how much the franchise values ​​its history.

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“Jireh (Ibañes) and I just talked and the uniforms arrived, it's as if we wanted to remember the early days of the franchise when it was still Welcoat. A kind of 'retro' approach. Even in the NBA, some teams wear 'retro' uniforms,” Guiao said in Filipino after the dominant 110-90 victory over Converge.

“It feels good to wear these t-shirts and uniforms and there are a lot of people commenting that they want the dragon design and the history of the franchise, and that's why I also settled on this franchise because it has protected its good name all along.”

18 years ago, the Welcoat Dragons entered the PBA and were not very successful.

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However, after two years, the team changed its name to its current name; the Rain or Shine Elasto Painter, in an effort to shake up the franchise.

Now being one of the most renowned teams in the league, it is safe to say that the franchise has achieved relevance since then.

Ibañes, former Welcoat swingman and current team manager, explained that the decision to use the retro jerseys had everything to do with the timing of Welcoat's relaunch this year.

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“They were relaunching the Welcoat livery and it was the perfect time to allow T-shirts. It's really good because this is where we and the entire franchise started, so I'm happy that they tried wearing the Welcoat Dragons (shirts),” he said in Filipino.

“(It’s) exactly the same design, except the material wasn’t what it was before. They are sublimated but have the same design and some differences in number placement to adhere to PBA protocol,” she added.

Ibañes said the PBA allowed them to use him more than once in this conference.

And why wouldn't they use it again? It seems luck coincided with the uniforms as Rain or Shine saw history made as Welcoat kits were worn after Beau Belga became the first local player in franchise history to record a triple-double with 25 points , 12 rebounds and 10 assists.

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“The commissioner’s office was kind enough to allow us to use them at this conference. We still have a few games where we will wear dark (uniforms) and if the bosses give us more signs, we will try to wear them again.”