PBA board to take up rookie draft

Joaquin Henson (The Philippine Star) - December 2, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The PBA board of governors will be convened for a zoom meeting tomorrow afternoon with the next draft in the agenda as commissioner Willie Marcial is expected to propose a timetable in the event the 46th season opens in April. Chairman Ricky Vargas said yesterday other items in the agenda are the 3x3 program, the invitation for the league to participate in the East Asia Super League in Macau and updates on the Clark bubble. The PBA’s involvement in the FIBA Asia Cup third qualifying window in February is not in the agenda but Vargas said SBP president and Meralco team Governor Al Panlilio may bring it up on an FYI basis under other matters.

If the next season starts in April, Marcial said the draft will likely be in March. February will be a busy month for the PBA if FIBA gives its go-signal for the Philippines to host the third qualifying window.  The plan is for PBA players to reinforce Gilas in the next window with one or two games against South Korea and one against Indonesia on the table.

The board will discuss the eligibility criteria for the coming draft. Up for review is the PBA D-League requirement. Under existing draft rules, locals are required to play at least seven games and Fil-foreigners, nine in the PBA D-League before applying to turn pro. But since the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup was suspended after only three playing days last March, the requirement became unrealistic. Another requirement is for Fil-foreigners to show a Philippine passport with a Bureau of Immigration certificate of recognition and Department of Justice affirmation.

Several Fil-foreigners own a Philippine passport but have not been issued a certificate of recognition and affirmation. Blue-chip Fil-foreigners in this situation include two-time US NCAA Division I assist champion Jason Brickman of Long Island University, 6-7 Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser of the University of California at Riverside, 6-7 Rich Smith of George Fox University and 6-5 Jeremiah Gray of Dominican University of California. Brickman, 29, has played for San Miguel Alab in the ABL and Mighty Sports in the Jones Cup. Rosser, 26, is San Miguel Beer player Matt’s brother. Player agent Marvin Espiritu said if a Fil-foreigner is able to produce a legitimate Philippine passport, it should be sufficient proof of citizenship. It’s the same requirement for eligibility in the UAAP, Asian Games, SEA Games and FIBA 3x3.

Players lined up to join the draft include Alvin Pasaol, Santi Santillan, Franky Johnson, Troy Rike, Anton Asistio, Andrei Caracut, Joshua Torralba, Joshua Munzon, Jaime Malonzo, James Laput, Jun Bonsubre and Tzaddy Rangel. A player who skips two consecutive drafts despite his eligibility faces a seven-year ban unless he submits a written explanation why to the PBA and is allowed.

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