No coach knows that value of Chris Tiu better than Rajko Toroman, the former coach of the SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national squad.
And the Serbian coach, who currently serves as consultant for Petron, thinks that the former SMART-Gilas captain will thrive in the pro league.
“He was a very effective player for me when we were playing in the PBA,” Toroman told InterAKTV in a telephone interview. “He was second in rebounding and assists and was third in terms of scoring.”
Tiu announced his decision to turn pro on Friday, ending months of speculation about his basketball future. Still, questions remain about whether he’ll shine in the big league.
His old coach, however, has no doubt. “I’m sure, he will succeed in the PBA,” Toroman said, adding that Tiu will be able to adjust to the physicality of the pro game.
“He’s a tough kid. He knows how to deal with this kind of stuff. He’s an intelligent player.”
Toroman added that Tiu’s entry will be a boon for the pro league. “He can bring the fans easily to the coliseum. Chris and the PBA can benefit mutually.”
The draft is slated August 19, 4 p.m. at Robinsons Midtown Manila.