Philippines sportsExpress set to make Ateneo's 'dynamic duo' as Top 2 picks


Air21 has already taken the surprise out of Sunday's PBA Annual Rookie Draft by declaring it will take the Ateneo duo of Rabeh Al-Hussaini and Nonoy Baclao as the top two overall picks.

Then again, a few shockers may still spring out of the hour-long proceedings at the Market! Market! Place in Taguig.

"Expect a lot of trades on Draft Day," said Meralco coach Ryan Gregorio.

Unlike the Express, who own four picks in the first round alone including the first three selections, the Bolts won't have their chance until the end of the round at No. 11, triggering speculations the league’s newest member would try to make a deal to fill up positions the team are still lacking.

Express coach Yeng Guiao said Al-Hussaini and Baclao will go down as the franchise's top two picks in the proceedings that start at 4 p.m.

The team's choices after that remains its biggest dilemma.

"We have no problems for the Nos. 1 and 2," said Guiao "But we are still undecided when it comes to the No. 3 pick."

The third pick was acquired by the Express in the Mac-Mac Cardona trade that also involved Meralco and Talk 'N Text.

After that, Air21 will have another first round pick at No. 6, before choosing 18th and 20th in the second round.

The Tropang Texters are the first team to select in the first round after the Express at No. 4, followed by Rain or Shine at No. 5.

Ginebra will have back-to-back picks at nos. 7th and 8th, respectively, followed by reigning Philippine cup champion Derby Ace at 9th and recently-crowned Fiesta Cup titlist Alaska at 10th.

Rounding up the second round in order are Ginebra, Derby Ace, Meralco, Alaska, Meralco, Barako Bull, Air21, Coca-Cola, Air21 and Alaska.

For this year's Draft, a total of 66 aspirants applied in the league's first official activity ushering the 2010-2011 season.

Outside of Al-Hussaini and Baclao, other potential talent who made quite an impression in the week-long Rookie camp are former slam dunk champion Elmer Espiritu, one-time national team stalwarts Rey Guevarra and RJ Jazul, Hans Thiele, Pari Llagas, NCAA Finals MVP Jimbo Aquino, and Fil-Canadian Sean Michael Anthony.

Incoming commissioner Atty. Chito Salud is already expected to share center stage with predecessor Sonny Barrios in Sunday’s proceedings. – JVP, GMANews.TV


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