San Miguel Beer will finally have the big man that will complement June Mar Fajardo and NorthPort will have the big man that it needs after they swapped former No. 1 picks in a celebrated trade approved by the PBA Commissioner’s Office on Monday.
The Beermen sent Christian Standhardinger to the Batang Pier in exchange for the vastly improved Mo Tautuaa, whose more agile game for a man of his size can make San Miguel even more dangerous while playing beside the 6-foot-10 June Mar Fajardo.
“I specifically asked for Christian, because he suits our run-and-gun style,” NorthPort coach Pido Jarencio told the Inquirer over the phone, even though there was a tinge of sadness in him in letting Tautuaa go.
Tautuaa blossomed under the guidance of Jarencio at NorthPort, averaging a career-best 11.3 points and close to nine rebounds before being shipped away.
“Christian can give us a solid post-up presence, and we are excited to have him here,” Jarencio went on. “It’s a win-win situation for both of us.”
Standhardinger was selected first overall by the Beermen in the 2017 draft—a right it acquired from Columbian that divided the league’s board and led to the resignation of Chito Narvasa as commissioner.
But Standhardinger has struggled at San Miguel lately, as he is forced to share time with Fajardo, the reigning five-time MVP.
Upon leaving the Beermen, Standhardinger averaged just 3.5 points and four rebounds in just four games for the Grand Slam-seeking squad.
Tautuaa could make his debut for his third team when San Miguel battles Columbian Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Interestingly, Standhardinger plays his first game as a Batang Pier against the Beermen on Oct. 23 at Cuneta Astrodome.
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