SAN Miguel Beer on Monday sent back-up slotman Christian Standhardinger to NorthPort for Mo Tautuaa in a trade of former top draft picks that was approved by the PBA Commissioner's Office.
The league announced the shock deal which had the top selections of the 2015 and 2017 PBA rookie draft swapping places at the peak of their careers.
The No. 1 pick of the 2015 draft who Talk N Text traded for two future picks to NorthPort in exchange for Terrence Romeo and Yousef Taha, Tautuaa found himself on the move again after a career resurgence with the Batang Pier.
The Fil-Tongan big man, 30, is averaging 11.3 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2.3 assist per game in the Governors' Cup and should now play a big role in the Beermen's quest for the second grand slam in franchise history.
A top San Miguel official confirmed management's decision to part ways with Standhardinger, who the team selected with the top overall pick in the 2017 draft after a contentious trade with KIA in exchange for a number of role players.
The same SMB insider, however, said the team has yet to receive a formal decision on whether the trade has been approved or not.
League sources confirmed the trade papers were sent to the Commissioner's Office just before the close of office hours on Monday.
Standhardinger still played for the Beermen in their 129-124 loss to Barangay Ginebra in Sunday's PBA Governors Cup, finishing with two points and two rebounds in 16 minutes of play.
It is still unclear what prompted San Miguel to trade a big man with the skills of the 6-7 Standhardinger, although there are unconfirmed talks that the Fil-German is far from happy playing behind June Mar Fajardo in the Beermen camp.
Tautuaa is set to make his SMB debut in a game against Columbian on Sunday at the Smart Coliseum while Standhardinger's first game with NorthPort will be against the Beermen on Oct. 23 at the Astrodome in Pasay City.