Twenty-five years ago, then-Swift coach Yeng Guiao missed his chance on drafting his former player in the amateur ranks Bong Ravena in the 1992 PBA Draft as the deadeye gunner was selected one pick ahead by San Miguel.
Fast forward to 2017 and the fiery coach once again had a chance to draft another Ravena, Bong’s son Kiefer.
Luckily for Guiao, lightning didn’t strike twice as San Miguel went with Christian Standhardinger as the top pick, allowing NLEX to draft the younger Ravena at second in the 2017 PBA Rookie Draft on Sunday.
“It’s no surprise because from the beginning, he was really the one we’re eyeing,” Guiao.
Guiao and the Ravenas share a tight-knit relationship given their history but he said it wasn’t the reason why he drafted Kiefer.
“Even when he wasn’t born yet, his father was my player,” said Guiao. “We’re very close to Bong and Mozzy, but it’s not really that closeness that made us decide to pick him. What he has earned for himself through the years, he has proven that he is a winner, and he has proven that he’s an intelligent player who can play in any system.”
With Ravena in tow, Guiao likes what he has as he sees Ravena forming a deadly backcourt duo with Kevin Alas.
“Kiefer’s style is good for our system. Now, we have a K-and-K tandem, Kevin and Kiefer in our backcourt and they’ll be the future of this team,” he said as he expects his rookie to bring in instant impact with the Road Warriors.
“Kiefer is coming to the league that he doesn’t need a lot of the learning experience that the other guards have to go through. He doesn’t need that long of an adjustment period. But I’d like to see him improve his outside shooting and his consistency, maybe being able to defend bigger guards also. He doesn’t need to improve much.”