CHRISTIAN Standhardinger played down his so-so debut for San Miguel Beer, stressing that he’s content to basically be a point forward for the Beermen in their 93-85 loss to Meralco in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Wednesday night.
The top rookie pick scored his first basket shortly after coming off the bench – a jumper from the left corner – but he ended up making just one more shot after that at garbage time, finishing with four points on 2-of-5 shooting and five boards in almost 20 minutes. He averaged 22.5 points for Hong Kong Eastern in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) last season.
But the 6-foot-8 power forward dished out two assists, had two steals, and recorded the highest plus-minus among his teammates with +8.
“That’s what I told you I’m going to do: I’m not going to go out there like in the ABL where I was the main scorer of the team and trying to really aggressively get my points,” Standhardinger said.
“I shot just five shots and I’m just trying to facilitate, and get the guys open, and put the guys in the right situation, and situation, and unfortunately, that didn’t work out today,” he added.
Standhardinger reiterated that he doesn’t mind coming off the bench on a powerhouse SMB team.
“Like I've said, I'm okay with whatever role I am needed in,” the Filipino-German standout said. “And I think in this team, we have many scorers. My job is to defend, give energy and facilitate more. And I think all of you guys that that was my main focus today on the court.”
“I will do that, keep doing that, as long as the head coach tells me different,” he added.
What Standhardinger feels he will have to adjust to is SMB’s deliberate pace.
“We play a little bit slower than my Hong Kong team, sprinting up and down, and here, it’s more like a half-court game, so I will need to adjust to that,” Standhardinger said.
“And I will need to adjust to the different way the games are called, and obviously, I need to really fit into my role in this team, but I think….everybody kind of did a bad job, so I feel like. I think I’m okay,” he added.