MORE than shock and grief, it was self doubt that overcame freshman center Aldrech Ramos the moment he got hold of the news that he has been traded for the second time, just five months into his promising PBA career.
“Ang una kong naisip, bakit ganun. Rookie season ko pa lang tapos na-trade na naman ako,” were the first words he uttered when he talked to Spin.ph about the blockbuster deal consummated Tuesday revolving around 10 players from five different teams.
The 24-year-old Ramos was among those affected, as San Mig Coffee let go of him in the complicated trade that saw the former Far Eastern University stalwart landing at Alaska.
It marked the second time Ramos was involved in a trade in less than half a year. Just moments after Barako Bull selected him No. 5 overall in the rookie selection, he was sent to San Mig for Fil-Am Sean Anthony and the rights to the No. 12 selection which it used on former San Beda slotman Dave Marcelo.
And just when he's starting to feel comfortable playing under coach Tim Cone and with the rest of the Mixers, Ramos found himself packing his bags again and headed for Alaska.
“Nagulat ako kasi biglang-bigla,” Ramos confided.
The deal took place right on the first day the Mixers began practicing for the mid-season Commissioner’s Cup. Ramos, together with Jonas Villanueva and JC Intal who were likewise part of the trade, were no longer made to change to their training uniforms.
“Di na kami pinag-practice dahil sinabi na nga `yung tungkol sa trade,” said Ramos, a former member of the Gilas Pilipinas training pool.
Although hurting inside, the rookie big man found solace in the wisdom of Cone and the comforting words of his San Mig teammates.
“Isa lang sinabi nila, na dapat masanay na ako dahil part yan ng buhay ng isang player. Kaya nga raw kami professional, kung saang team ka mapunta, laro ka lang.”
One good thing about the deal is that Alaska, like San Mig Coffee, also plays the triangle offense, making the transition a lot more smooth for Ramos.
Likewise, coach Luigi Trillo’s deputies were quick to call their rookie acquisition to make him feel welcome, while reminding him not to be late on his first day of practice with the Aces.
That was more than enough to make Aldrech excited to start all over again.