Replacement import Ricardo Ratliffe the right fit for Star, says Marc Pingris
A traditional back-to-the-basket big man, Star import Ricardo Ratliffe finished with 23 points on 10-of-21 shooting, 13 boards, and four assists in 38 minutes against TNT. Jerome Ascano  

MARC Pingris believes Star has found the right replacement import for the remainder of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup in Ricardo Ratliffe.

While not necessarily saying he’s a better fit than Denzel Bowles, the Hotshots star forward said Ratliffe is what his team needs to revive its campaign in the midseason conference.

“At least may nakuha kaming magandang import ngayon,” Pingris said after the Hotshots’ win over Tropang TNT on Sunday. “Ang kailangan talaga namin kasi yung sa ilalim talaga naglalaro.”

“At least makakatulong siya sa amin,” he added. “Maganda naman (ang laro) at masipag din.”

[See Should Star stick with Ratliffe?]

While he also mixes it up down low, Bowles, who had to leave for the US following a death in the family, thrives better in the mid post with his perimeter jumpers, and on transition.

Ratliffe, on the other hand, is a traditional back-to-the-basket big man and finished with 23 points on 10-of-21 shooting, 13 boards, and four assists in 38 minutes against TNT.

“He is a post-up guy,” Hotshots coach Jason Webb said. “He makes his money there at the post.”

“People won’t really notice this, but I really thought, on the defensive end, he blew up a lot of ball screens because of his ability to stay in front of the defense,” the rookie coach added.

Pingris, though, feels Ratliffe, who committed five fouls against the Texters, still has to adjust to the officiating.

“Yun lang, kailangan pa niya mag-adjust sa tawagan,” the Gilas Pilipinas mainstay said. “Maa-adjust rin niya yun.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos