So I rarely post new PBA content on my blog because I just don’t want to.
I almost blogged when JV Casio was traded to Blackwater… and I had a couple of sentences prepared when Sean Anthony got swapped for the nth time.
If I am reading this correctly, it seems as if Vic Manuel was involved in a three-way deal. Phoenix would get Sean Anthony, San Miguel would get The Muscle Man, and Northport will get… Arwind F’N Santos.
Look, I may not like most of his antics, but Arwind Santos is a PBA institution. He is a former MVP, a 9-time PBA champion, a 2x Finals MVP…
Wait, I’m going to properly list his achievements.
MVP | 1 BEST PLAYER OF THE CONFERENCE | 2 MYTHICAL 5 | 9 MYTHICAL 10 | 2 FINALS MVP | 2 CHAMPIONSHIPS | 9 ALL-STAR MVP | 2 ALL-STAR | 11 DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR | 2 ALL-DEFENSIVE TEAM | 7
In my list of best PBA careers, the dude ranks number four behind June Mar Fajardo, Ramon Fernandez, and Alvin Patrimonio.
Yes, love him or hate him, Santos' PBA achievements are legendary! Other than the aforementioned and disregarding his MVP trophies, Santos has a lot of PBA accolades.
The only thing missing is a grand slam crown... and I doubt if he'll get that as part of Northport Batang Pier.
The Spiderman is also 40 years old. He should have retired with the team like the other San Miguel legends.
With that said, he joins Danny Ildefonso, Danny Seigle, Allan Caidic, and Dondon Hontiveros as former King Beermen who finished their careers in other organizations.
Again, Santos is already 40 years old but the dude can still ball. Despite San Miguel’s superstar hoard, the former FEU stalwart averaged 12.3ppg, 8.5rpg, 1.8apg, and 1.3bpg with a 42 percent shooting clip. Right off the bat, the names that could ellipse his feat at this stage of his career are Ramon Fernandez, Abet Guidaben, Philip Cezar, and Asi Taulava. The only reason why they let go of Santos is probably because of his big-ass salary.
It can’t be age… because if the Beermen are looking for “up and comers”, Manuel is already 34 years old.
In his lone conference with the Phoenix Fuel Masters, Manuel averaged 12.8ppg, 5.3rpg, 1.5apg, and 0.6bpg with a 47 percent shooting clip.
Santos and Manuel's numbers are almost equal.
So what’s with the trade?
Here’s a scary thought.
Despite the fact that it’s sure as hell that Greg Slaughter won’t go back to Ginebra and Tim Cone won’t likely shoot for The Spiderman, Northport has turned into the SMC’s version of the Blackwater Bossings. This is the reason why young players would rather play in Japan and in the Gilas pool than play in the pros. Sure, Northport made the quarterfinals but the team is notorious for giving away their assets.
I want to believe that Pido Jarencio and the UST boys are doing their best to make this team awesome but they traded Christian Standhardinger to Ginebra, just gave up Sean Anthony and subsequently Manuel to Phoenix and San Miguel, respectively. Lost Terrence Romeo and Stanley Pringle to the big corporations, and are now overachieving with Paolo Taha and Sidney Onwubere combining for 20 points and 9 rebounds per game. While I am not discrediting the performances of Taha and Onwubere… you must admit that TNT and the SMC teams have better second-unit players.
I don’t know how Santos fits in with the Northport roster.
I don’t even know if this is his final stop this week.
All I know is that Arwind Santos finds ways to unleash hell on his tormentors. If he’s going to act as a mentor, then Jamie Malonzo will have a field day learning all his tricks. If they would use him as a second or third scorer, then imagine this team with Slaughter, Robert Bolick, Malonzo, Santos, and the import. Hell, I can see Malonzo becoming an SG/SF to make this team extra dangerous.
As for Manuel, here’s the thing.
Unlike Santos, Manuel isn’t as healthy and has bounced from team to team. Excluding B-Meg, the team that drafted him in the 2012 PBA Draft, San Miguel is his sixth team in nine PBA seasons. Sure, Manuel will be used in San Miguel but this could also mean that he’s going to experience playing time decrease with June Mar Fajardo and Mo Tautuaa plus the San Miguel import.
The good thing about Manuel is that he thrives under those situations.
A couple of seasons ago, Manuel averaged 16.0ppg and 4.9rpg in less than 22 minutes of action. His scoring averages have never gone to single digits in the last five seasons. Needless to say, if they want punches in bunches off the bench, then Manuel is going to Leo Austria’s guy.
But as far as winning the trade, unless Arwind Santos is re-traded to another SMC team or retires all of a sudden, The Spiderman will find a way to stay relevant.