PBA: Jonathan Simmons ‘may stay longer’ at NLEX despite uncertainty
MANILA, Philippines—NLEX may have fixed the situation with its import Jonathon Simmons at the moment, but there remains uncertainty.
Road Warriors coach Frankie Lim, though, said the team is prepared for however long the import is staying in the ongoing PBA Governors’ Cup.
“When he told me he had to go to China to play, I told him to finish his contract first and maybe we can settle something here. Big money is involved and we couldn’t stop it but there is a chance that he may stay here longer,” Lim said after the Road Warriors’ 124-102 win against Blackwater at Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday.
On Tuesday night, Lim confirmed that Simmons playing for NLEX was almost a lost cause due to contract issues with his team in China.
Lim said the PBA approved him to play just hours before tip-off.
“Last night, I slept early. I didn’t want to think about it and I got a text message this morning before lunch that he can play and that was about it,” Lim said.
“Simmons is not [just] a good player but he’s a great player. He knows how to play, pass, we’re really lucky to have him,” he added.
The former NBA veteran finished with a stellar performance of 32 points and nine rebounds. Lim, however, said that that team has an import ready in case Simmons leaves.
“In case of his withdrawal, we will have someone ready. Larry will be the one to handle it. When he will be here is all up to Larry,” Lim said.
Player of the Game Kevin Alas also felt ecstatic with the import’s last-minute addition, saying more can be expected from the former San Antonio Spurs player.
“He’s NBA-caliber, we can expect more from him because there are stretches where he struggled. This was his first game so maybe he’s still getting used to the physicality. I hope in the next three games, he could adjust to this brand of basketball,” said Alas, who finished with 31 markers and eight boards.