Jarencio tempers draft expectations

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    NORTHPORT coach Pido Jarencio has always played the cards he’s been dealt with.

    Jarencio also likes to keep his cards close to his chest, no matter how enticing the pieces he should be going to war with in the coming PBA season.

    “Kasi hindi pa natin alam ang overall picture na mangyayari sa team kaya basta ako tingnan natin,” was how Jarencio defended his seemingly nonchalant attitude.

    “Una, masyado pang malayo ang draft. Pangalawa, hahanapin mo pa bagay para sa iyo,” added Jarencio. “Kaya wala pang dahilan para maging excited. Waiting game muna tayo.”

    It is undeniable, however, that the immediate future looks very bright for NorthPort as it tries to build a team around main man Christian Standhardinger.

    Batang Pier management has already made its first move, trading Bradwyn Guinto to Rain or Shine for Sydney Onwubere and Clint Doliguez.

    The Batang Pier have rights to the No. 2 and No. 11 picks, as well as the 13th overall choice, in the rookie draft set March 14.

    It is on the first round pick just behind Terrafirma that Jarencio is looking forward to.

    “’Yung No. 2 para ka na ring No. 1 noon. Di ka nalalayo,” noted Jarencio. “Sa dami ng available talent, medyo ano ka roon, sasalain mo iyon.”

    Such caution is needed in the face of very limited scouting reports amidst the lingering threat of the pandemic, forcing the PBA to cancel the usual pre-draft combine for applicants.

    “Unang-una, di mo naman makikita ‘yung laro ng bata, wala namang draft combine. Kaya more on videos ka na lang diyan, kung makakakuha ka,” offered Jarencio.

    “And then wala pang official na listahan (of draft applicants), kung sino magiging available.”

    Standhardinger is among the 10 Batang Pier whose contracts expired at the end of last month, leaving Sean Anthony, Kevin Ferrer, Garvo Lanete and Sean Manganti with live deals.

    NorthPort’s representative to the PBA Board, however, said only a few minor details needed to be ironed out in the Fil-German center’s new contract before the parties come to an agreement.

    In the meantime, Jarencio believes it’s best for him to adopt his usual stance.

    “Alam mo naman ako, walang masamang tinapay. Basta kung sino dumating, para sa akin makakatulong,” said Jarencio, adding: “Huwag lang dumating bulag, seven-footer nga pilantod naman. Basta importante dumating buo mga katawan, ayos pag-iisip, Okay na ‘yun.”