CJ is no.1; Parks 2nd

December 16, 2018

CJ Perez is this year’s No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 PBA Rookie Draft at the Robinsons Place in  Ermita,  Manila yesterday.

And Columbian Dyip is surely very happy to get him.

A year after  passing up on the No.1 pick Christian Standhardinger and  drawing flaks for trading him to San Miguel Beer, Columbian made sure the best player -- Perez  -- in this year’s batch will land on their line-up.

“Dream  come true  ito para sa akin,” said Perez, who led Lyceum of the  Philippines to two runner-up finishes behind San Beda College in the NCAA.

“With Columbian, I assure them  that I  will  give my best effort  and   hustle  every  game. Yun ang gusto  kong  ma-contribute sa  kanila  (Columbian),” said Perez.

“Kahit rookie pa lang, gusto ko na  marami akong maitulong at ma-improve pa lalo  yun team,” added the 25-year-old  Perez.

Perez, who also briefly saw action  for  San Sebastian College in the NCAA and Ateneo in the UAAP,  is expected to form a young core with Jerramy King and Rashawn McCarthy  for the Dyip, who are hoping to get out of the cellar since joining the PBA in 2014.

There  were no surprises in the other top picks.

Two-time UAAP MVP Ray Parks of the National University Bulldogs, was taken  as No. 2 pick overall by  Blackwater Elite.

Although still  considered as a rookie,  Parks is not wanting  in experience  having played in the NBA Summer League, NBA G League and  the ASEAN  Basketball League (ABL), where  he  won  back-to-back  Most Valuable  Players (MVP) awards.  

The 25-year-old Parks also played for the Gilas Pilipinas in the 2016 FIBA  Olympic Qualifying Tournament  in Manila.

Parks, however, was not around .

The son  of  seven-time PBA Best Import awardee  Bobby Parks was with  the  Alab  Pilipinas team, which  is  scheduled   to face  the  CLS  Knights in  the ABL in  Surabaya, Indonesia.

Parks  was  represented  during the draft by his long-time manager-friend,  Charlie Dy.

NorthPort   Batang Pier  also emerged a  winner after  getting   its wish to get former San Beda Red Lion Robert Bolick as the No. 3 pick overall.

Bolick, a vital vog in the Red Lions’ back-to-back title romps in the NCAA,   is expected to   play  alongside superstar point guard Stanley Pringle  in the backcourt  of  veteran coach Pido Jarencio’s  team.    

NLEX selected University of the Philippines hero Paul Desiderio as No. 4 pick.

The fourth pick for NLEX came from a recent trade with Phoenix where the Road Warriors gave away Alex Mallari and Dave Marcelo in return.

Meralco took Fil-Am Trevis Jackson at No. 5 while Rain or Shine used the sixth pick overall on San Beda hero Javee Mocon.

NLEX  pulled off another surprise at No. 7 by getting big man Abu Tratter.

Rain or Shine took Jay Alejandro at No. 8.

The surprises continued as Alaska tabbed Lyceum guard Jasper Ayaay at No. 9  and Magnolia got San Sebastian Michael Calisaan at No. 10.

Letran guard JP Calvo, the MVP of the PBA Draft Combine, was picked at No. 11 overall by Columbian while Jorey Napoles was another surprise first-rounder when he was picked at No. 12 by Phoenix. PBA commissioner Willie Marcial led the draft ceremony.