RAIN or Shine coach Yeng Guiao admitted he initially had second thoughts about making Maverick Ahanmisi the third overall pick in the PBA Draft on Sunday.
In fact, the outspoken Elasto Painters mentor said the Filipino-American combo guard wasn’t even in the top two of his list prior to the draft proceedings at Robinsons Place Manila.
“I thought he was a real legitimate first-rounder, but to make him number three, I had doubts,” Guiao admitted after the proceedings. “Personally, I was looking at Art dela Cruz or Scottie Thompson.”
Still, the Painters made the projected mid to late first-rounder the No. 3 pick, thanks to the prodding of assistant coach Caloy Garcia, Mike Buendia, as well as the two sons of ROS co-owner Raymond Yu.
“The coaching staff knows Maverick more than I do, although I’ve seen some of his games for Café France and in college,” Guiao said of the University of Minnesota product. “I was overruled by the coaching staff.”
“If they believe in him that much, I can allow myself to be overruled and I saw in the games, he really has a high upside,” he added. “I think in the PBA, he can make an immediate impact. It was a long, hard discussion. From number three down, it's a toss-up. Before we got here, we really decided on it.”
The Painters made Mapua star Josan Nimes the last pick of the first round at No. 12, before making another surprise pick at 15th overall with Adamson stalwart Don Trollano.
They passed up on the rest of their picks.
Guiao's choices were surprising and, safe to say, unconventional. But the fiery coach said the team got what it wanted.
“We're very happy. The only one which we didn't get was Glenn Khobuntin,” Guiao said of the National University skipper, who went to NLEX at No. 10. “Everybody that we tried to draft, we were able to get.”