CHRISTIAN Standhardinger is no doubt a potential top pick in the coming PBA rookie draft.
Yet the team which ends up selecting him also faces a major risk.
Standhardinger is signed to play for six months with the Hong Kong Eastern Lions in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) and the Hong Kong A1 League.
The new ABL season starts this November and ends by March. Considering his six-month contract, it means Standhardinger won't be available to play in the PBA at least until May or June or about middle of mid-season Commissioner's Cup.
The scenario leaves the team that gets the rights on Standhardinger without the 6-foot-7 big man during its campaign in the Philippine Cup.
Of course, unless the PBA franchise is amenable to buying out the Fil-German's contract with Hong Kong.
"That's the risk whichever team that will take Standhardinger in the draft faces," said league operations manager Rickie Santos.
"They should be willing to wait."
The Alaska Aces did that in the Don Allado case 18 years ago. The franchise selected him the no. 8 overall pick in the 1999 draft but had to wait for the 6-foot-6 power forward to suit up in his final playing year with De La Salle before finally getting his services.
It was also the case of Purefoods with four-time league MVP Alvin Patrimonio in 1988 when the team didn't get his services until the second conference as he still had an existing contract with Swift in the amateurs.
Unlike Allado though, Patrimonio, now team manager of Star, didn't go through the draft as he was part of the batch of players elevated by Purefoods from the amateurs.
Both players would later win championships with their respective teams
But having played lesser games in their rookie season, Patrimonio and Allado didn't get to contend for the Rookie of the Year honor.