A total of 143 aspirants have applied for the first ever PBA-Developmental League Rookie Draft scheduled this Thursday at the PBA Office in Libis, Quezon City.
The list includes 27 Fil-foreign applicants bannered by Fil-Italian Chris Banchero, one of the most sought after Fil-foreign players in the country today.
The proceedings start promptly at 2 p.m.
The league’s six founding members enjoy the luxury of selecting ahead of the other teams with Café France holding the rights on the No. 1 pick, followed by Cebuana Lhuillier, Boracay Rum, Big Chill, Blackwater Sports, and NLEX.
Cagayan Valley takes its crack at the No. 7 pick, before Hog’s Breath and Jumbo Plastic select at Nos. 8 and 9, respectively. The order of selection for the new teams this season will be determined by lottery.
All incoming players are required to join the Rookie Draft to be eligible to play in the 2014 D-League season set to kick off on Oct. 24 at the Ynares Sports Arena.
Also joining the Draft are Jerrold Nielsen Asaytono, son of many-time PBA All-Star and Mythical Team selection Nelson Asaytono and Josemarie Adornado, son of former three-time Most Valuable Player William `Bogs’ Adornado.
The 24-year-old Banchero, however, stands heads and shoulders above the rest.
The 6-foot-1 point guard out of Seattle Pacific University played a key role in San Miguel Beer’s breakthrough championship in the ASEAN Basketball League and was named Finals MVP as the Beermen completed a three-game sweep of the Indonesia Warriors.
His two-year stint with the Beermen easily makes him a potential top pick in the league’s maiden Draft proceedings.