Had Greg Slaughter signed a contract renewal with Barangay Ginebra, the 7-foot former No. 1 Draft pick would have been traded to NorthPort for Christian Standhardinger, something that the center had gotten wind of, hence, the holdout.
Several sources whom the Inquirer contacted on Tuesday confirmed this even as the PBA Commissioner’s Office reiterated that Gin Kings management could still ship Slaughter out even if he doesn’t sign a fresh pact since teams can trade and acquire rights to players in exchange for players with live contracts.
But the question is: Would the other team bite?
Ginebra will have the PBA rights to the former Ateneo slot man in the UAAP for perpetuity, and holding out certainly works against the welfare of Slaughter since not having a team will deny him the opportunity to earn a living as he approaches his mid-30s.
“What I know is that was already a done deal,” a source privy to the Slaughter-Standhardinger negotiations told the Inquirer over the phone. “It just hit a snag when he (Slaughter) did not sign [a renewal].”
This was the same statement of a separate source, who also said that Ginebra coach Tim Cone, who is in the US, is scheduled to sit down and talk with Slaughter in the next few days with the league to open its 45th season in just over three weeks.
Slaughter, according to another source on Monday, said that he doesn’t see himself playing for another team.
“He told me that he doesn’t want to leave Ginebra,” that source, a confidant of the former University of the Visayas Lancer, had said.
There were also reports that Slaughter is demanding for more playing time, which has dwindled considerably especially in import-spiced conferences.
Playing a total of 49 games last season, the 31-year-old Slaughter averaged career-lows in points and minutes played with 9.6 and 22.4, respectively. And, according to PBA chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III, that was the fourth straight season that Slaughter’s scoring has dipped and the first time in his career that he failed to average in twin digits in that department.
Slaughter, who has won four championships with the Kings and has played for no other PBA team but Ginebra, has been the subject of loud trade talks for months as his numbers have dipped and Standhardinger’s—after being traded away by San Miguel Beer to NorthPort midstream last year—has blossomed to MVP-like figures.
From a backup to June Mar Fajardo at San Miguel, Standhardinger averaged of 23 points, 12 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 44 minutes for NorthPort on the way to winning his first best player of the conference award. INQ
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.