Unless he has played for the Philippine national team, an overseas-based player with Filipino roots cannot join the PBA Rookie Draft on Aug. 28.
That’s because the league has adopted new draft rules that make it mandatory for these players to have a two-conference residency in the PBA Developmental League if they are not former members of the national team.
But there’s a catch: Only national players, past or present, are eligible to apply for the draft by Aug. 28, only one conference would have been played in the D-League.
The requirements for homegrown players hoping to make the draft was supposed be discussed in yesterday’s PBA board meeting, but according to the league’s operations and technical director, Rickie Santos, the board has yet to make a final decision.
It is possible that only a one-conference residency in the D-League may be required of the homegrowns, Rickie said.
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“The league adopted this new eligibility rule because we want the [foreign-bred Filipinos] to know the Filipino culture first before he is allowed to play in the big league,” explained PBA media bureau chief Willie Marcial. “The two-conference residency in the D-League also allows the fans to get to know the players before they advance to the pros.”
NLEX has five Fil-Ams in the team—Cody Tesoro, Cjris Ellis, Karl Dehesa, Cliff Hodge and Christian Reyes, younger brother of Talk ’N Text’s Ryan. Pharex has one in 6-foot-7 Jason Deutschman.
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We waited and waited, but I guess the television feature on this former PBA cager was shown way past midnight, if at all.
The plugs and the teasers described the unnamed cager as the brother of a former beauty queen and another PBA cager.
They showed his silhouette on video as he operates a pedicab, implying that he has fallen on hard times.
We were in a party last Friday and expected the special feature to be telecast over Studio 23 after Game 2 of the PBA championship series between Ginebra and Talk ‘N Text.
All the guests from the basketball community eagerly awaited the feature, to see if the cager was indeed Totoy Marquez, as all of us guessed.
Totoy is the brother of former Miss International Melanie Marquez, who is also a movie star, and Joey Marquez who, like him, played in the PBA before joining show biz and, much later, politics.
Unfortuately, Totoy never enjoyed the height of fame and stature his two siblings achieved.
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According to a PBA official, Totoy has been frequenting the league games recently.
“He has aged considerably,” the official said. “I’ve been seeing him at the games and he looked familiar but it took a while before I recognized who he was.”
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For Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, Manny Pacquiao is the most famous and most liked athlete in the world due to his ready smile and humility.
This is the reason why the Pacman is in demand for product endorsements not only in the Philippines but also in the United States.
Very recently he was signed up by Hewlett Packard for the company’s tablet computers, and by State Street Produce which distributes fruits and vegetables to restaurants all over the US.
Arum estimates that Manny stands to earn about $10 million from the two deals.