BARANGAY Ginebra will no longer have to contend with import Jonathon Simmons when the defending PBA Governors' Cup champions face streaking NLEX on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Yet, coach Tim Cone believes the Kings will still have their hands full against new Road Warriors import and ex-NBA player Wayne Selden.
And from what he’s been hearing, Selden could be just as dangerous as Simmons is.
“I understand Selden is an absolute stud. I have friends in the States that have watched him play and they think he’s going to be a super, super import,” he said of the 28-year-old import out of University of Kansas.
“They may not lose that much with this kid Selden coming in.”
As things stand, NLEX is undefeated in four games behind the leadership of the 33-year-old Simmons, who unfortunately, had to leave the team and honor his earlier contract in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA).
Simmons left the country on Monday.
Cone admitted it would have been a challenge for the Kings playing an NLEX side with Simmons still around, likening the scenario to playing Bay Area in the Commissioner’s Cup finals with Myles Powell replacing Andrew Nicholson.
“I think our team is looking for challenges. To go out there and go up against Jonathon Simmons, I mean, he’s just like a young Justin (Brownlee) reincarnated. So it would have been fun going up against him,” said the Ginebra coach.
But Selden looks to be a challenge too, for the Kings, who won their first game in the conference against Rain or Shine on Sunday, 116-108.
“He’s really good. Played three or four years in the NBA,” added Cone about Selden, who arrived in the country late Saturday night.