(Photo by the PBA Media Bureau)
Yesterday's games marked the beginning of the PBA careers of two of the top 5 picks from this year's draft, Kiefer Ravena of the NLEX Road Warriors and, Jeron Teng of the Alaska Aces. Both young men have well-decorated collegiate careers in the UAAP with both winning multiple championships for their respective teams plus MVPs and Finals MVPs. So there's no surprise at all that these two were included among the top prized rookies in this year's draft. In fact, if Christian Stanhardinger wasn't picked as the top pick, many pundits believed that either Ravena or Teng could have been the top pick. Either way, these two will go head-to-head for the Rookie of the Year award because Standhardinger will miss a big chunk of this season due to his ABL stint.
Question: Who got a better debut in their respective debuts?
Let's start by comparing the numbers:
- Kiefer Ravena: 18 points, 12 assists, 7 rebounds, 7 for 11 shooting
- Jeron Teng: 16 points, 0 assists, 2 rebounds, 4 for 9 shooting
Statistically, Manong Kiefer had a better debut, even better than his father, Bong Ravena who only had 2 points in his first PBA game. While the younger Ravena is already a proven scorer during his college days and even in the amateur ranks, his playmaking ability is what separates him from Standhardinger and Teng. He also had 2 steals and played for 29 minutes and helped to get the big W for the Road Warriors.
Jeron Teng, on the other hand, is a talented player and only fools will think otherwise. He may not have won on his first game but we all know that he can get better as the season progresses.
It's only one game and one good game doesn't mean a player is already the Rookie of the Year. But there's no denying the fact that both Kiefer Ravena and Jeron Teng will be the future of the PBA and we are in for a show of this generation's new breed of basketball stars. Christian Standhardinger may be the top pick but both Ravena and Teng will make the loudest of the noise among rookies not because of their names but because of what they can do with the ball in their hands.
Who will win the ROY? Prediction: Kiefer Ravena