THE efforts of Allan Mangahas in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup last month have finally paid off.
After leading Blackwater to its first championship at the expense of powerhouse NLEX, Mangahas fulfilled his dream of making it to the PBA after signing a one-conference deal with Meralco last Monday.
“Happy ako sa opportunity na binigay sa akin,” Mangahas told Spin.ph on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old Pulilan, Bulacan-born cager becomes one of the few undrafted players to make it to the PBA through the D-League, regarded as the breeding ground of the country’s future pro basketball stars.
The veteran playmaker, who averaged 14.5 points, 12 boards, five assists, and one steal in 34.5 minutes during the Finals, impressed Bolts coach Ryan Gregorio who was the one who invited him to practice with the team.
Mangahas has been training for one month with the Bolts, ironically a sister team of the Road Warriors, whose four-conference title reign was finally snapped by the Elite.
With no takers during the last PBA draft, the former Mapua Cardinal and NCAA Rookie of the Year plied his trade in the D-League, where he found a niche with the Elite. He finished second to Jake Pascual in the Foundation Cup Conference MVP race.
Mangahas is still finishing his psychology degree in Mapua.