Luckily for the Elasto Painters, chips fell in their favor as they took the Ateneo defender at five in the PBA Season 47 Rookie Draft.
Gavina on Gian Mamuyac and Co.
"We knew we were gonna go with Gian at five if he was available," said coach Chris Gavina, who's just as pumped to get all of the team's targets in the annual draft proceedings.
Mamuyac, of course, was one of those at the top of Rain or Shine's list and seeing how the 6-foot-2 guard has improved his offensive game on top of his already ferocious on-ball defense in his final year, the team knew that the Ateneo guard was indeed a keeper.
"When we were in our meeting, Gabe was at our pre-draft meeting and he had nothing but great words and adjectives for Mamu. We were surprised Converge went two bigs cause we were looking at [Jeo] Ambohot, but we're extremely happy with what we got," he said.
Fans were quick to note the similarities between Mamuyac and Norwood, both stingy defenders who have honed their offensive skillsets over the years.
And this early, they're excited to see the transfer of knowledge that the two will have in the Elasto Painters.
Another fair surprise for Gavina was the chance to land Shaun Ildefonso at 10, as he said, "We were happy that we still got a really high-caliber talent and we all know what his name stands for."
But it's the general consensus that the mentor had after another solid draft, with Rain or Shine also adding Jhonard Clarito and RJ Ramirez from the rookie pool.
"When you get these high-level championship-breed kind of players to add to what we already have in our core with [Mike] Nieto, Andrei [Caracut], and Santi [Santillan], you can't be any more ecstatic," said Gavina.
"I'm looking forward to our practices being even more competitive than it usually is. All these guys will be trying to prove themselves. I don't see any of these guys having any sense of entitlement about their playing time. They all know they're going to have to earn it. And I'm sure our vets on our team all are happy as well about the quality of players that we acquired."
"I can't even describe the level of enthusiasm I have for all these guys. I'd say about 8.5 or nine out of 10. I'm really happy."
We are now on Quento! Download the app to enjoy more articles and videos from SPIN.ph and other Summit Media websites.