Ken Tuffin feels thrilled after finally realizing his childhood dream of playing in New Zealand.
The Fil-Kiwi forward is now seeing action in the NZ NBL with Taranaki, who took him in the seventh round of the league’s draft weeks ago.
“It was a dream growing up for me to play here,” Tuffin told Tiebreaker Vodcasts’ The Prospects Pod, presented by SMART and Cocolife and supported by Chris Sports.
“My dad used to take me to games as a kid. I was very fortunate to have this opportunity.”
Tuffin has been making waves in the semi pro-league, showing how valuable he can be for the Mountainairs. The 6-foot-4 winger is averaging 14.5 points and 4.5 rebounds while helping his side to a 3-2 record.
Still, Tuffin aims to grow as much as he can as the season progresses.
“Just progress individually as a player and do whatever I can to help my team win. I’d always be like that,” he said.
This stint of the 23-year-old will surely benefit not just for him, for Far Eastern University as well, since he is set to play his final year in UAAP Season 84.
But most importantly, the experience would be of great help for the Tamaraw’s PBA aspirations.
For Tuffin, his “end goal” is to play in Asia’s pioneering pro league.
“The end goal is to play professionally. I would love to play in the PBA, of course,” said Tuffin, who’s already eligible for the next PBA Draft.
And once he turns the dream to reality, it would mean plenty for his family, especially for his mother’s side.
Tuffin’s mom was born in Rosario, La Union, and has relatives residing in Pangasinan and Pampanga.
“It would mean a lot, as well, to my family in the Philippines to have someone from my mom’s side of the family to make it there,” he said.
“And it would be really proud for them to have something like that as well. Definitely, that’s one of my goals.”