Ginebra rookie Jammer Jamito compared to Espinas by Cone, but idolizes Pingris
Jammer Jamito poses with Ginebra fans after practice. Karlo Sacamos

IT may be too early to make comparisons, but it didn’t take long for Tim Cone to see who Jammer Jamito plays like.

The Ginebra coach compared the Gin Kings rookie to a fellow southpaw slotman in Gabby Espinas of San Miguel Beer.

“The more I look at him, it really reminds me of Gabby Espinas,” Cone said after their first practice of the offseason on Friday. “If we can turn him into a Gabby Espinas, we will really be pleased because Gabby is a great player. That's his ceiling.”

“Whether he can reach it, that's another thing,” the champion coach was quick to add. “If he can reach just fifty of Gabby, that’s good for us.”

[See Jamito vows to make most of PBA opportunity]

Jamito, the 6-foot-5 St. Clare product taken third in the regular draft last month, was flattered by the comparison with Espinas, although he said he has always wanted to emulate the game of another player who has played for Cone - Marc Pingris.

“Isang karangalan ko yun kasi matagal na naglalaro si Gabby dito,” Jamito said. “Masaya naman ako sa comment na ganun.”

“Idol ko talaga si Marc Pingris,” added the former D-League star, who flashed his athleticism by attempting a few 360 dunks in practice. “Yun ang ginagaya ko, yung mga one-hander niya.”

Cone said he needs a few more practices to give better feedback on Jamito, who has already undergone individual skills training with assistant coach Kirk Collier that last 10 days.

“Coach speaks highly of him,” Cone said.

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Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos