SAN Mig Coffee Mixers coach Tim Cone said the team’s decision to go for big men in this year’s rookie draft was a way to prepare for the future.
With reed-thin 6-foot-8 center-forward Rafi Reavis now 35 and Yancy de Ocampo no longer a spring chicken, Cone said a deal that saw the Coffee Mixers, formerly the B-Meg Llamados, deal the 12th overall pickr to Barako Bull in exchange for rookie big man Aldrech Ramos was a move in the right direction.
“You don’t get to see a lot of available big men during the draft. And since Rafi is now 35 years old, we felt we could somehow groom Aldrich to eventually replace him,” Cone told Spin.ph shortly after the draft proceedings.
San Mig also added former National University banger Jewel Ponferada, whom Cone said could add more defensive muscle and toughness to the Llamados' frontline.
Cone is convinced the 6’4” Ponferada can be a perfect complement to Jean Marc Pingris, who has been the only so-called “tough guy” among the Llamados.
“People question the toughness of this team. And when we saw Jewel still available, we got him to the team. Jewel can easily bring that toughness to the team,” added Cone, who had steered the Llamados to two Finals appearances and a championship this past season.
San Mig’s two other picks are Gian Chiu, the 6’7” former Ateneo juniors product, as well as 6’1” forward Ramon Mabayo taken in the third and fourth round, respectively.