Irony not lost on former car dealer Geronimo after he was picked by KIA in PBA draft
Christian Geronimo - not Standhardinger - is picked by KIA in the PBA draft. Jerome Ascano

KIA must really be taking its 'unconventional' approach to basketball to heart.

After making a head-scratching move of sending the first overall pick in the draft to San Miguel Beer for a bunch of benchwarmers, the Picanto made another interesting move on Draft Day when it took little-known Christian Geronimo as their last pick in the proceedings.

The 5-foot-11 Geronimo is probably the most unheralded among the 44 hopefuls who applied this year, hardly having experience in top-level amateur basketball, playing only in small leagues in his alma mater Polytechnic University of the Philippines.

Yet the Picanto took a chance on the 29-year-old guard from Pasay by picking him in the fifth round of Sunday's draft – probably less for his ability on the hardcourt, but more for a special skill set that’s fit for the team – or the company, for that matter.

After all, Geronimo was once a car dealer for Mazda, resigning a year ago to prepare himself for the draft.

Now, he can also use the same skill set for his new car company.

“Siguro habang player ako, pwede ako mag-ahente sa kanila,” Gernimo said with a chuckle after the draft.

But at this stage, Geronimo wants to pursue his basketball dream.

“Defense po (ang kaya ko ibigay),” Geronimo beamed. “Pagbubutihin ko po sa depensa ko, kasi marami naman na po na scorer sa PBA eh. Gagayahin ko po 'yung ginagawa nina Scottie Thompson: sipag sa depensa, rebound, hustle, ganon.”

“Kung ano pong makakaya ko i-contribute ibibigay ko po talaga sa team na ‘to,” he added. “Nagpapasalamat po ako at nagtiwala po sila sa akin. Pagtatrabahuhan ko po talaga to.”

Whether he makes the roster or not, Geronimo is just happy to fulfill his dream.

“Parang nananaginip po ako,” the teary-eyed cager said. “Di ko po ma-explain yung pakiramdam. Di ko po akalain na makakaakyat ako sa stage ng PBA Draft.”

If he won’t have a place in the lineup, it seems he can have one on their sales team.

“Kung ida-draft nila ako as a salesman, pwede rin. Hindi, joke lang,” Geronimo said. “Bibigay ko po talaga lahat ng makakaya ko sa team na 'to kasi pinagkatiwalaan nila ako.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos