Starting center Doug Kramer may not be part of the Powerade Tigers for long.
According to a highly-placed team source, the former Ateneo slotman is seeking a three-year contract extension, but Coca-Cola management is only offering members of the team a maximum of one year on each new deal.
Because of this, the Tigers attempted to trade Kramer to Barako Bull in exchange for backup power forward Jondan Salvador, but the deal was disallowed by the PBA because it was perceived to be imbalanced.
With the trade vetoed, another suitor has emerged for Kramer’s services: the Meralco Bolts.
Meralco team manager Virgil Villavicencio confirmed his squad’s interest in the vastly-improved center.
“Nothing concrete at this stage. As far as players involved, wala pa rin namang mga pangalan,” said Villavicencio.
But Barako Bull hasn’t given up on a potential deal to acquire Kramer.
“They’re working to improve on the trade,” Powerade coach Bo Perasol told InterAKTV in a telephone interview. “But I don’t want to get another player. What I want to get is a future pick, possibly a first rounder. As far as Meralco is concerned, nag-uusap kami, pero mukhang they cannot offer us something na maganda.”
Kramer is one of the key players responsible for the Tigers’ Cinderella run to the Philippine Cup finals, where he finished second to Petron Blaze superstar Arwind Santos in rebounding and led all players in double-doubles. His numbers went down in the Commissioner’s Cup, as he was displaced from his starting spot by Powerade import Dwayne Jones.
The move to offer Kramer a mere one-year deal fans further speculation about Powerade’s future in the PBA. Despite assurances from management that the squad is staying in the league, observers wonder whether the team will stay true to its promise after the team’s moves to trade key players, including Kramer and Marcio Lassiter, who was sent to Petron Blaze last month.
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