Four days before the draft, things are starting to get clearer. The big news Thursday was Ronald Pascual’s pullout from Sunday’s event, a curious choice considering he had been projected to be a first round pick. We also got a hint of a blockbuster trade when Air 21 coach Franz Pumaren revealed parts of the deal that would give his team Noy Baclao, Rob Reyes, Leo Najorda, and KG Canaleta. Now on to the mock draft:
1. June Mar Fajardo – Petron (from Barako Bull, acquired from Air 21)
Earlier, we asked our readers to vote about how they think June Mar Fajardo’s career would turn out. So far, most people are torn about whether he’d end up like Danny Ildefonso or Yancy De Ocampo.
2. Calvin Abueva – Alaska
Things are quiet on the Alaska front right now. We wonder if Alaska has an ace up its sleeve.
3. Chris Tiu – Petron (from Barako Bull)
Whoever ends up being coach of Petron would be a fan of Chris Tiu. The problem with this team is that coaches don’t always get the final say when it comes to personnel movement, which includes the decision on the third overall pick.
4. Cliff Hodge – Meralco
For what it’s worth, there are some members of our staff who think that Alaska will do a 180-turn and take Hodge at No. 2.
5. Alex Mallari – Barako Bull (from Petron)
We keep hearing that Barako Bull wants a ball-handling guard, making Mallari a no-brainer choice at this spot. The question is: Will this pick still be with Barako Bull come Sunday?
6. Keith Jensen – Barangay Ginebra (from Barako Bull, acquired from Powerade)
Coach Siot Tanquingcen told us that he hopes Chris Tiu would end up with Ginebra, and that the team was also looking at Keith Jensen.
The news came as a surprise to fans of Ginebra. They were surprised that Siot Tanquingcen was still the coach.
7. Chris Ellis – Rain or Shine
With Ginebra expressing interest in Jensen, it’s getting more likely that this pick will get traded. Whoever ends up with it would have a nice young prospect in Chris Ellis.
8. Vic Manuel – Barangay Ginebra
This pick, according to Tanquingcen, may end up getting traded. With Pascual’s pullout, the choices at this spot suddenly became more sparse.
9. Jason Deutchman – B-MEG
Of all the teams we’ve polled so far, B-MEG has been the most tight-lipped about draft plans. Tim Cone once drafted Mike Burtscher in the first round, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him taking a flyer on another tall, athletic guy in the draft.
10. Aldrech Ramos – GlobalPort (from Barako Bull, acquired from Talk ‘N Text)
The last two teams who have bought a PBA franchise have been given a concession of an extra second round pick, given at the start of the second round. We’ll see if GlobalPort gets that as well.
11. Lester Alvarez – Air 21 (from Alaska)
Franz Pumaren is looking for a point guard after making moves to beef up his frontline, and he’s reportedly very high on Alvarez.
12. Yousef Taha – B-MEG (from Barako Bull acquired from Air 21)
13. Raphy Reyes – B-MEG (from Barako Bull)
We wouldn’t be surprised at all if the B-MEG (or San Mig Coffee) ends up trading these picks for future considerations.
14. Dave Marcelo – GlobalPort (from Meralco)
15. Kelly Nabong – Barako Bull (from Petron)
16. Jewel Ponferrada – Barako Bull (from Powerade)
Barako Bull will be in the four-team blockbuster trade which would include Air 21, Petron, and Ginebra, so we don’t know if the Energy will retain these picks.
17. Mark Jeffries – Rain or Shine
18. Janus Lozada – Barako Bull (from Ginebra)
19. Simon Atkins – Alaska (from Barako Bull acquired from B-MEG)
We don’t have much to add here, so just check out this hilarious fan-made video tribute to the short-lived Simon Atkins-Kim Chiu pairing:
20. Emman Monfort – Talk ‘N Text
We failed to note in the previous mock that Monfort was the push-up champion in Wednesday’s pre-draft camp. That should be its own All-Star Weekend event.
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