Javelosa chases PBA dream

Javelosa chases PBA dream

Joey Villar (Philstar.com) - March 1, 2021 - 6:50pm

MANILA, Philippines — Compared to other PBA rookie draft applicants, Michael Jay Javelosa does not get the attention he deserves. But the former national junior standout isn’t bothered and says his focus right now is chasing his PBA dream.

“This year, there are so many Fil-Ams and popular players from the UAAP and NCAA,” said the 25-year-old Javelosa, whose last basketball stop was with the Iloilo Royals in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League.

“For me, what I can bring to the table is my experience because even though I’m not in the UAAP, I can match with my level of play against most of them.

“I hope to remind some coaches who might have forgotten about me that I’m still here and I’m still trying to compete and pursue my dream,” he added.

Unknown to many, the 6-5 Javelosa, who grew up rooting for San Miguel and a fan of Ranidel de Ocampo and Marc Pingris, was a starter for the Olsen Racela-mentored national youth team that also included Jordan Heading, who was named into the special Gilas draft.

Javelosa committed to Ateneo but never really got to play in the first team due to various reasons. But he played for Ateneo’s Team B instead alongside CJ Perez, who is now a budding PBA star.

After his days with Ateneo where he graduated with a degree on Inter-Disciplinary Studies, Javelosa went on to play for Navotas and later for the Iloilo Royals owned by his father, JJ.

Javelosa said he kept in shape during the lockdown so that he’ll be ready if basketball resumes.

“In fact, I hired a trainer so that I’ll be ready when my  number is called,” he said.

For years, he had brushed aside plans of applying for the draft because of the strict requirements that he knew he had a hard time meeting. But when the PBA decided to be lenient due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Javelosa took advantage of it.

“The opportunity came knocking, so I took the plunge,” he said.

Javelosa hopes his national team experience would help remind PBA teams that he can contribute.

“I think my experience in the national team for three years would help me remind them that I can play,” he said.

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