NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao would rather focus on the present than looking too far ahead with regards to Kiefer Ravena and his pending departure to Japan.
The decorated mentor said that the Road Warriors simply want to savor the time they have with the 27-year-old guard. They will then deal with whatever they have to once he leaves and takes his act to the B.League.
On Saturday, Ravena finally received clearance from the PBA to play for Shiga. This, provided that he finishes the ongoing 2021 Philippine Cup first.
“I think we have to just savor and enjoy Kiefer’s presence while he’s here. And then tsaka na namin iisipin kung ano ang pwedeng gawin when he leaves for Japan,” Guiao said after their 108-94 win over Terrafirma on Sunday night.
There has been some curiosity about how life without Kiefer would look like for NLEX. And the team caught a glimpse of that versus the Dyip.
After logging in over 30 minutes in each of their first three games, he only saw action for 22 minutes and 29 seconds in the victory due to foul trouble. He had four in the game, following a total of five in their previous outings.
Ravena only ended up with five points on 1-of-8 shooting, easily his lowest this conference after averaging 19.3 points prior. But he had seven assists, the third time in the tilt that he had reached such an amount of dimes.
Guiao, though, doesn’t really see it that way. He reiterated that the team just wants to make the most out of their time with the second-generation star.
“We don’t want to think of life without Kiefer.
“We just want to enjoy his company — we just want to enjoy him being here making a contribution to the team. Tsaka na namin iisipin ‘yun,” said the 62-year-old.
The decorated mentor does want Ravena to stay and play for the Road Warriors. Still, he isn’t one to get in the way of someone who aims to gain invaluable experience by spreading his wings overseas.
“I was hoping talaga na mag-stay pa siya. Pero alam naman natin na very rare opportunity ‘yun, so we understand that.”