Dwight Ramos will be 'very integral' to Hokkaido, says GM

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 21 2022 04:55 PM

Dwight Ramos during his formal introduction with his new B.League team, the Levanga Hokkaido. (c) Levanga Hokkaido
Dwight Ramos during his formal introduction with his new B.League team, the Levanga Hokkaido. (c) Levanga Hokkaido

MANILA, Philippines -- Dwight Ramos is expected to play a big role for Levanga Hokkaido in the upcoming season of the B.League, with its general manager calling the Filipino-American forward a "very integral" member of their team.

Ramos joined Hokkaido in May after spending his first season in the B.League with the Toyama Grouses. In 46 games with Toyama, he averaged 10.0 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.1 steals in 24.8 minutes of action.

The 24-year-old forward was formally introduced by Hokkaido on Wednesday. 

"I think for this team to succeed, he's gonna be a very integral part of this team and at the same time, we would like to provide him with the environment to succeed," Levanga general manager Takahiko Kiyonaga said during the press conference. 

Kiyonaga was clearly impressed with Ramos' ability, having watched him play for Gilas Pilipinas in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers in 2021. He averaged 13.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 2.2 assists in six games for Gilas in the qualifiers, which included a pair of upsets over South Korea.

"What we see in Dwight, first and foremost, he's a hard worker. No matter what color of jersey he's worn, in any level that he plays, winning or losing, and it's very difficult for coaches to teach a player to be a hard worker," Kiyonaga said. 

"He's very calm on the court, and he's got a very good rhythm that he brings to the game. And that's something that can certainly help this team. Not to mention, he's got a very high basketball IQ on both ends of the floor," he added.

Kiyonaga expects Ramos to have an impact on both ends of the floor, touting his strength on defense as well as his versatility on offense. The Fil-Am is capable of creating shots not just for himself but for his teammates as well, and this is a skill that Kiyonaga says they need.

Hokkaido missed the playoffs last year with a 21-35 win-loss record.

"In many different ways, I think for sure he can help this team," the general manager said.

Ramos, for his part, is excited for a new challenge after a mostly solid season with Toyama. He has already played a handful of preseason games with Levanga and is optimistic of their chances for the upcoming season.

"I'm excited to play, start the regular season, start playing," said Ramos. "I'm still getting used to everybody on the team and everything but we're progressing well and I'm really excited for the season."

"It's definitely good to see like everyone [is] serious about the games, really trying to win, even though it's just preseason," he also said. "I was happy to see that everyone was really serious about it and not like taking it lightly."

"I think that was a good sight to see right before the season so I know the season should be good for us."

Levanga opens its B.League campaign on October 1 against the Akita Happinets.