The PBA Season 46 Rookie Draft was held on March 14. A total of 65 out of 86 aspirants were selected over eight rounds. Here's what happened, with a pick-by-pick analysis for the special Gilas Draft and the first two rounds of the regular draft from ESPN5's Yoyo Sarmenta.
Special Gilas Draft
1. Terrafirma Dyip
2. NorthPort Batang Pier
3. NLEX Road Warriors (from Blackwater)
4. TNT Tropang Giga (from Blackwater via NLEX)
The quartet of William Navarro, Jaydee Tungcab, Jordan Heading, Tzaddy Rangel will surely do their part in helping Gilas Pilipinas. Each player has a wide range of skills and they will eventually find their niche in the pro game by training with coaches Tab Baldwin and Jong Uichico. Headlining the group is top pick Heading, a big-bodied combo guard who can be a defensive gem in the future. Navarro, meanwhile is a savvy forward who also happens to be an underrated playmaker. Former UP Fighting Maroon Tungcab has been with the national pool since last year and he'll continue to develop his all-around game. Rangel, meanwhile, is a big-bodied bruiser who can make a living as a solid rebounder. Their respective PBA careers will have to wait, but fans can see them action with the national team.
1. Terrafirma Dyip
Joshua Munzon - A projected top pick prior to the draft, Joshua Munzon grabbing the number one overall selection is fitting. He's an offensive machine with an array of moves that can jump start the Terrafirma franchise especially after the CJ Perez trade. As a 6-foot-4 forward who can handle the ball with ease, he'll be a matchup nightmare for opposing teams. He's a proven bucket-getter from his days in the ABL, PBA D-League, and Chooks 3x3 circuit. It's safe to say he's going to be a star in the league pretty soon.
2. NorthPort Batang Pier
Jamie Malonzo - The Greg Slaughter-Christian Stanhardinger trade has changed the look and the identity of both NorthPort Batang Pier and Barangay Ginebra. The inclusion of a talented swingman like Jamie Malonzo will help bridge that transition for NorthPort. As the number two overall pick, he's more than ready to prove everyone that he deserves to be a top selection. The former Green Archer has a versatile skill set that coach Pido Jarencio and his staff can explore. With his freak athletic ability, he can obviously play with pace out on the open court or move off-ball in a half court setting. Imagine him on a fastbreak with Robert Bolick or working the paint alongside Sean Anthony.
3. NLEX Road Warriors (from Blackwater)
Calvin Oftana - Still no surprises from the draft as NLEX picks Calvin Oftana. The San Beda product is a versatile player and a proven winner. His stint with Gilas Pilipinas also opened a lot of eyes as a potent scorer. It's also no coincidence also that his player comparison is Javee Mocon. The two are exceptional playmakers with size and range.
4. TNT Tropang Giga (from Blackwater via NLEX)
Mikey Williams - TNT was adamant in getting ahead in the draft and its acquisition of Mikey Williams is a testament to the team's hunger for success. The loss of Ray Parks will be left by Tropang Giga but Williams can fill that void. He's arguably the best point guard in the draft and he has the experience that can mean immediate wins for TNT. It'll be exciting to see him play alongside Jayson Castro and RR Pogoy.
5. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
Leonard Santillan - RoS may need a guard in the draft, but Santi Santillan is the next available talent. Williams would have been the perfect fit but Santillan can bring a lot to the table. Like most draftees, he's as versatile as they come. His game has also grown by leaps and bounds since his time with the Green Archers. He's a big man who can run and down the court with a proven rebounding game.
6. Alaska Aces (from Phoenix via Magnolia)
Benedict Adamos - Adamos getting selected at sixth might come as a surprise to fans, but Alaska is a team that's proven to hone big men like Vic Manuel and Abu Tratter. The loss of Manuel might have rung the alarm bells for Alaska to pick a guy who can fill in the gap. The former Perpetual Help center can further develop his skills under Danny Ildefonso. He can make a living in the league just by his rebounding and defense.
7. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
Larry Muyang - Imagine a daunting frontcourt of Muyang, Jason Perkins, and Justin Chua. That's physical, mobile, and downright scary. Muyang will bring his impecable rebounding prowess and defensive capabilities to a team who traded away Calvin Abueva. In terms of character, Muyang is headstrong and fearless which makes him perfect for the hungry Fuel Masters squad.
8. Terrafirma Dyip (from SMB)
James Laput - After selecting Munzon, Terrafirma's option to pick a big guy in Laput is understandable. He's a 6-foot-10 center who can make an instant impact for a team that's looking for wins. He still might be raw in some areas but as they say you can't teach height. He can have a career just by his size and potential.
9. Meralco Bolts
Alvin Pasaol - The high-scoring, fun-loving Alvin Pasaol will fit well in Meralco. Imagine a tall five-man crew with Chris Newsome, Aaron Black, Bong Quinto, Mac Belo, and Pasaol. That's a lot of length and fire power. Pasaol is also an underrated rebounder. The Bolts sometimes struggle in the shaded area and Pasaol (together with the acquisition of Belo) can help a lot.
10. Magnolia Hotshots (from Phoenix)
Jerrick Ahanmisi - Unlike most guards in the draft, Ahanmisi doesn't need the ball in his hands a lot to excel. He's proficient off the ball and can get better on using screens. Magnolia needs a hands-down shooter who can shred defenses just by shooting the rock. He can also be a valuable space-creator for a team who already has a lot of players who love to handle the ball
11. NorthPort Batang Pier (from TNT)
Troy Rike - With his size and basketball IQ, Troy Rike can find a home in any PBA team. And him joining Batang Pier will only work wonders for both parties. Rike will bring his wits and not to mention his experience to a struggling team like NorthPort. He's no Christian Standhardinger but he'll undoubtedly help the team. He's a proven competitor and you can just sense that he's a team-first guy.
12. Barangay Ginebra Kings
Ken Holmqvist - If there's a team that can transform Ken Holmqvist into a Swiss Army knife, it's Tim Cone and Barangay Ginebra. Cone and his staff have a knack of developing wingmen who can do multiple things on the floor. He may not be a big name like his peers in this year's draft, but he might turn heads in a few years.
13. Barangay Ginebra Kings (from NorthPort via Terrafirma and NLEX)
Brian Enriquez - Ginebra's need for a young guard will be satisfied by the acquisition of Brian Enriquez. He could have benefitted by playing a year in the UAAP with the UE Red Warriors but the pandemic cancelled this plan and pushed him straight into the PBA Draft. There has not been a lot of talk about Enriquez but his experience playing in Division 2 in the U.S. NCAA makes him an interesting prospect. Ginebra is a team that's already close to being complete and they don't need to add anything specific at this point so they could gamble on an relative unknown and hope it pays off in the end.
14. Blackwater Bossing (from NorthPort via Meralco)
Rey Mark Acuno - Blackwater went with height with its first selection in the second round. Acuno is a hard worker who can work well under coach Nash Racela and his staff. The void left by Mac Belo will surely be felt and getting a big man is a step towards the right direction.
15. Blackwater Bossing
Joshua Torralba - Coach Nash Racela continues to use his expertise in the UAAP after selecting former Green Archer Joshua Torralba. The team already has a lot of scoring guards and Torralba can morph into a 3 and D type of player. He can be a bulldog on the defensive end and be a corner specialist for the Bossing.
16. Alaska Aces (from NLEX via Phoenix)
Taylor Browne - Alaska continues to tweak its roster with Taylor Browne. The Aces love to execute in the halfcourt setting and Browne can be a low-key contributor the system. He has the speed and smarts to outplay stronger and bigger foes.
17. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
Franky Johnson - After picking Santillan, RoS finally gets a guard in Franky Johnson. A spitfire guard who has a penchant for knocking down tough shots, Johnson can be a superb playmaker for the Elasto Painters. With a new head coach in Chris Gavina, the team needs someone who can run the offense. Johnson is a very driven guard who will be eager to test his mettle in the league.
18. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters (from Magnolia)
Nicholas Demusis - If the Fuel Masters need athleticism or just somebody who can get his own shots, Nick Demusis The Fil-Am swingman turned heads with his stellar play in the MPBL and he's the right hybrid player if you want somebody with explosiveness. It remains to be seen just how much he can produce on a consistent basis, but you can be sure about his effort and toughness.
19. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters (from Alaska)
Aljun Melecio - Melecio will be a hit with Phoenix. The Fuel Masters needs a dynamic playmaker who can run the second unit. Melecio can serve this role as an instant scorer off the bench that can help Phoenix when they have a dry spell. He's a proven winner, matched with a fearlessness and positive attitude.
20. NLEX Road Warriors (from SMB via NorthPort)
David Murrell - Murrell can work wonder under the minutes-for-everyone system under coach Yeng Guiao. The animated coach also has a history of squeezing out the potential of its players and Murrell will benefit from that. Murrell is a workhorse who can have a long career in the league.
21. Alaska Aces (from Meralco via Phoenix)
Alec Stockton - After parting ways with MJ Ayaay, Alaska will try its luck in finding its long, lanky, 3 and D player with Stockton. Defense has been Stockton's calling card after his career in FEU and he will have to bring his A-game to the Aces
22. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (from Phoenix)
Anton Asistio - Asistio is a knockdown artist who can have a role with the Elasto Painters. He got drafted because of his shooting and not a lot of guys who can shoot from a variety of angles. Defense and playmaking aren't his strengths but he'll have time to work on that in his PBA career.
23. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (from TNT)
Andrei Caracut - RoS went with another point guard after Franky Johnson and getting Andrei Caracut is a plus. If Johnson is more of a scoring guard, Caracut is more of a settle-down-run-the-offense kind of player. After learning how to be a pro in the ASEAN Basketball League under Jason Brickman and head coach Jimmy Alapag, he can continue to expand his game in the PBA.
24. NorthPort Batang Pier (from Ginebra)
Mark Olayon - Batang Pier continued to go for size in the last pick in the second round. Olayon is a 6-foot-4 forward who can muscle his way into a lineup. He put up solid numbers during his tenure with UE and he continued to improve his game in the MPBL. He can score without a doubt but he's also a burly rebounder.
25. Terrafirma Dyip
26. NorthPort Batang Pier
27. Blackwater Bossing
28. NLEX Road Warriors
29. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
30. Magnolia Hotshots
Ronnie De Leon
31. Alaska Aces
32. San Miguel Beermen
33. Meralco Bolts
34. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
35. TNT Tropang Giga
36. Barangay Ginebra Kings
37. Terrafirma Dyip
38. NorthPort Batang Pier
39. Blackwater Bossing
40. NLEX Road Warriors
41. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
42. Magnolia Hotshots
43. Alaska Aces
44. San Miguel Beermen
45. Meralco Bolts
46. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
47. TNT Tropang Giga
Joel Lee Yu
48 Barangay Ginebra Kings
49. Terrafirma Dyip
50. NorthPort Batang Pier
Carl Bryan Ravanes
51. Blackwater Bossing
52. NLEX Road Warriors
53. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
54. Magnolia Hotshots
55. Alaska Aces
56. San Miguel Beermen
57. Meralco Bolts
58. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
59. TNT Tropang Giga
60. Barangay Ginebra Kings
61. Terrafirma Dyip
62. NorthPort Batang Pier
63. Blackwater Bossing
64. NLEX Road Warriors
65. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
66. Magnolia Hotshots
67. Alaska Aces
68. San Miguel Beermen
69. Meralco Bolts
70. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
71. TNT Tropang Giga
72. Barangay Ginebra Kings
73. Terrafirma Dyip
74. NorthPort Batang Pier
75. Blackwater Bossing
76. NLEX Road Warriors
77. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
78. Magnolia Hotshots
79. Alaska Aces
80. San Miguel Beermen
Luis Antonio Abaca
81. Meralco Bolts
82. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
83. TNT Tropang Giga
84. Barangay Ginebra Kings
85. Terrafirma Dyip
86. NorthPort Batang Pier
87. Blackwater Bossing
88. NLEX Road Warriors
89. Rain or Shine Elasto Painters
90. Magnolia Hotshots
91. Alaska Aces
92. San Miguel Beermen
93. Meralco Bolts
94. Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters
95. TNT Tropang Giga
96. Barangay Ginebra Kings
All teams passed in the ninth round.