Despite bevy of guards, Jalalon too good to pass up for Star
Despite having an already beefed up backcourt, Star head coach Chito Victolero admitted Arellano University’s Jiovani Jalalon was just someone too good to pass up.
“I think he’s the best point guard in the amateurs, so we grabbed the opportunity na makuha sya,” he said Sunday at the 2016 PBA Rookie Draft at Robinsons Place Manila.
The Hotshots bolstered their loaded backcourt with the acquisition of Jalalon from the Gilas draft, and Victolero is just ecstatic to handle one of the most exciting young guards in the country today.
But the new Star coach said that he’s known the ability of someone like Jalalon ever since his days in the collegiate level.
“Nung nasa Mapua pa ako, I tried to recruit Jio,” Victolero, the former Mapua Cardinals coach, shared in trying to pry away Jalalon, a budding playmaker back then from Informatics College.
The two would soon meet, though, in the NCAA with Jalalon choosing to play for Arellano as he started to make a name for himself in the collegiate ranks.
“He chose Arellano and okay din naman at maganda ang pinakita niya doon,” he said.
Now, Victolero has the chance to utilize a talent like Jalalon, as he tries to mesh the Cagayan de Oro native with his veteran guards Paul Lee, Mark Barroca, and RR Garcia.
“Sobra nga kami sa guards, pero I think magagawan naman natin ng paraan yun,” he said.
“We can use Jio based sa style niya na defensive guard. He could also contribute sa offense with his passing. High energy siya at yung hustle niya, yun ang hinahanap namin at makakapagbigay ng ibang tempo at impact sa team namin.”
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