Who will be the fourth pick?
MANILA, Philippines—With the top three picks already decided, the question of who will be the fourth pick and beyond will be answered as the PBA holds its Rookie Draft at the Robinson’s Place in Ermita Sunday.
League commissioner Chito Salud and new board chairman Ramon Segismundo of Meralco lead the proceedings which begins at 4 p.m.—marking the first official business of the PBA’s 39th Season.
Barring a last-minute change of heart, crowd-darling Barangay Ginebra San Miguel is set to tab the six-foot-11 Greg Slaughter as the top overall pick in a class many project to go down as one of the deepest in recent memory since the Draft was institutionalized in 1985.
If everything goes according to plan, Slaughter, the former Ateneo de Manila University star, is bound to become the second straight center selected first after Petron Blaze chose the six-foot-10 Junemar Fajardo.
Reigning Governors’ Cup champions San Mig Coffee Mixers are expected to nab former NCAA MVP Ian Sangalang as the no.2 pick while the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters are poised to
choose Letran’s lanky big man Raymond Almazan as the third overall pick.
Barako Bull follows with fourth to sixth picks and has its sights on Far Eastern University guards RR Garcia and UAAP MVP Terrence Romeo, University of Santo Tomas guards Jeric Teng and Jeric Fortuna, Arellano University’s Fil-Canadian guard-forward James Forrester and Adamson’s athletic swingman Alex Nuyles.
GlobalPort comes next at seventh followed by Alaska, which might go with the versatile Nico Salva, ROS at ninth and San Mig Coffee to conclude the first round. Petron, Air 21, Meralco and defending Philippine Cup champion Talk ‘N Text have no picks in the first round.
From the initial list of 85 applicants, it was trimmed down to 79 after former San Beda guard Mar Villahermosa and D-League standout Jeff Viernes withdrew while four others namely Japs Cuan, Mark Berry, Franz Delgado and Jumel Chien fell out after failing to attend the rookie biometrics sans a valid reason last Monday.
Still, the rookie class won’t lack talent with other notable players such as Fil-American guard Justin Melton, Ryan Buenafe, Carlo Lastimosa, big man Justin Chua and Eliud Poligrates, among others, in it.
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