by Waylon Galvez
Taipei – The episode involving Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes and Fil-German Christian Standhardinger a few days ago in their game against Iraq is already a thing of the past.
After it appeared that Reyes and Standhardinger would not see eye-to-eye when the national mentor gave his player a tongue-lashing for a dirty move against a rival cager, all is well over at the Gilas backyard.
“I think it’s a learning experience for him,” said Reyes prior to the Gilas game Friday opposite Lithuania. “Those are things that he has to learn the hard way. It’s no big deal… we’re not even making a fuss.”
Standhardinger was also asked to comment on what transpired, but he begged off, saying: “After the game.”
To his credit, however, Gilas assistant coach Jong Uichico said the 6-8 Standhardinger apologized to Reyes and his teammates at the locker room right after the game against Iraq.
Reyes was very furious at the new Gilas member when he shouted at Standhardinger to return to the dugout after the latter was ejected from the game for committing a second unsportsmanlike foul with 4:55 left in the fourth quarter.
Standhardinger was assessed a technical foul when he hit with a closed fist Ali Hameed in the stomach. Moments later, he got his second technical foul with 4:55 left by hitting Dhulfiqar Al-hchaimi as the players walked back to their respective benches for a TV timeout.
“There’s a fine line between being tough and playing dirty. That’s not how Gilas play… I don’t care if we lose the game. We’re going to be strong and physical, but we’ll not cross the line,” said Reyes.
The 28-year-old Standhardinger is making his presence felt here in this annual tournament, proving his worth to be part of the national team program for years to come under Reyes.
Before the game against Iraq, the Munich-born player, who played college ball for Nebraska and Hawaii, averaged 14 points and 9.4 rebounds per game coming off the bench as a back-up to import Mike Myers.
Against the Iraqis, however, Standhardinger only four points and three boards in nine minutes and 11 seconds of action.
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