31 October 2016

Mac Belo Tops The 37 New PBA Recruits

2016 PBA Rookies
As expected, the Blackwater Elites tapped the best talent in the 2016 Gatorade Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Annual Rookie Draft at Robinsons Place Manila in Mac Belo. Meanwhile, San Miguel Beer added 6-foot-9 Arnold Van Opstal to its already tall lineup while Barangay Ginebra enlisted a gunner in Kevin Ferrer and a pair of big men last 30 October.

Phoenix Petroleum went after Fil-Am shooter Matthew Wright from the Gilas pool and picked three standouts from the 2014 UAAP champion team National U while the rest of the ball clubs tapped the other best available talents in their bid to strengthen their respective rosters for PBA Season 42 that is set to start on 20 November.

Alaska Milk and Rain or Shine limited themselves to just their Gilas picks in Bryan Carl Cruz and Mike Tolomia, respectively, while NLEX and Star picked one each from the regular draft in addition to their Gilas recruits.

Phoenix and Mahindra came away with the biggest harvest of five players each while GlobalPort had four in addition to four trade recruits (Mike Cortez, JR QuiƱahan, Rey Guevarra and KG Canaleta) it got since its exit in the last Governors Cup.

Thirty-seven players in all were drafted, leaving 16 undrafted aspirants who were automatically relegated to the rookie free agent pool.

The Star Hotshots picking Jio Jalalon despite their already deep backcourt roster made up of Paul Lee, Mark Barroca, RR Garcia and PJ Simon, and the Gin Kings choosing little-known player Jammer Jamito from St. Clare College of Caloocan were among the surprises in the well-attended draft exercise.

"It’s an opportunity to learn from them," said Jalalon.

The draft proceedings started with PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa reading the choices of the 12 PBA teams from the Gilas pool, by alphabetical order starting with Alaska.

As expected, Cruz was the choice of Alaska, followed by Ferrer (Barangay Ginebra), Belo (Blackwater), Von Pessumal (GlobalPort), Russel Escoto (Mahindra), Ed Daquiaog (Meralco), Alfonso Gotladera (NLEX), Wright (Phoenix), Tolomia (Rain or Shine), Van Opstal (SMB), Jalalon (Star) and Roger Pogoy (TNT KaTropa).

Teams are not allowed to trade these Gilas players at least in the next two years.

As announced by the Blackwater management ahead of the draft, Raphael Banal was made the No. 1 pick overall in the regular draft.

"Obviously, we're all young players here at Blackwater. Hopefully, we grow together, progress and start winning," said Banal, a former Ateneo Eaglet who honed his skills in US college ball.

Then came the guessing game and the surprises.

Phoenix chose Gelo Alolino at No. 2 then picked two other former Bulldogs in Jeff Javillonar and Nico Javelona in the later rounds. The Fuel Masters ended their harvest in tagging former FEU Tamaraw Antonio Inigo at No. 8 in the second round of the regular draft.

Chosen after Banal and Alolino was Jamito by Ginebra. Next were Joseph Oriobu (Mahindra), Chris Javier (Star), Rashawn McCarthy (SMB), Jonathan Grey (Meralco), Reden Celda (NLEX), 6-foot-9 Jericho de Guzman (Ginebra) and Javillonar (Phoenix).

Hearing their names called in the next round were Tristan Perez by Blackwater, Al Francis Tamsi (GlobalPort), Jesse Saitanan (Meralco), Jovit dela Cruz (SMB), Ryan Arambulo (GlobalPort), Javelona (Phoenix), Cedrick Ablaza (Mahindra) and Inigo (Phoenix).

Drafted in the late rounds were Jan Jamon (Mahindra), Spencer Eman (GlobalPort), Ryusei Koga (Meralco), Timothy Habelito (TNT), Paolo Pontejos (Mahindra), Mikee Reyes (TNT) and Levi Hernandez (TNT).

In the end, teams like Blackwater, Mahindra, Phoenix, NLEX and GlobalPort got players that could stock up their arsenals while Ginebra, Star, Meralco could also improve on their draft recruits.

Alaska, Rain or Shine, SMB and TNT are expected to show up in the coming season with their old cores.

No comments:

Post a Comment