CHRIS Ross played down the controversial trade that saw powerhouse San Miguel Beer become even more formidable with the acquisition of this year’s top pick that turned out to be Christian Standhardinger from Kia for a bunch of bench players and a future draft pick.
Ross insisted it will take time to know who won in the trade as it remains to be seen how Standhardinger, the highly touted 28-year-old German league veteran and former NCAA Division I standout, adjusts to the local style of basketball.
“You never know if the trade will be lopsided until a couple of years from now,” Ross said in a chat with SPIN.ph after practice on Wednesday. “Obviously on paper, it looks like … it is what it is. But you never know.”
Ross cited the situation of the Los Angeles Lakers, who have pinned their hopes on celebrated rookie Lonzo Ball, only to see another rookie in Kyle Kuzma emerging with a more prominent role.
“There’s been trades where … like say for instance, the Lakers, they’re looking at Lonzo Ball to be their savior, but it’s Kuzma,” Ross said. “It looks like Kuzma’s going to be that guy, so you never really know with basketball.”
“You never know how Christian’s going to mesh with us,” he added. “You don’t know if Christian will be able to adapt to the PBA style of play. I mean, it’s different.”
Ross also expects Jay-R Reyes, Ronald Tubid and Rashawn McCarthy to shine with Kia.
“I feel like they will,” Ross said of his former teammates. “I feel Jay-R will play well, Ronald will play well, and McCarthy will have a breakout season. We played against those three guys in practice, and they’ve given us problems in practice, so I know what they can do.”
“What if they outperform Christian in three years? Is it lopsided for them now?” he continued. “So it’s basketball, man. The ball’s round. You got to play it out. You don’t win championships on paper.”
For now, it’s a waiting game for everyone.
“I guess the fans just got to stay tuned and we all got to stay tuned to see what happens in the future,” Ross said. “But for now, it is what it is.”