CALASIAO, Pangasinan—CJ Perez is looking forward to playing in front of his provincemates in Friday’s PBA All-Star match between the Rookies/Sophomores and the Juniors at the Calasiao Sports Complex here.
The top overall pick in last year’s Rookie Draft was raised in Bautista, Pangasinan and will be playing in front of his home province for the first time in a PBA setting.
“Sobrang happy. Siyempre excited na makakapaglaro ako sa Pangasinan,” said Perez after Thursday’s practice with the Rookies/Sophomores.
Aside from being entered in the Rookies/Sophomores, the Columbian Dyip cager is also set to compete in the Slam Dunk contest where he will competing against the last five champions of the event in Rey Guevarra of Phoenix Pulse and Chris Newsome of Meralco.
Perez is tempering expectations on the dunk contest.
“Mahirap ‘yung Slam Dunk pero ibibigay ko ‘yung best ko. For sure, lahat susuportahan kami. Kita kita tayo sa Slam Dunk. Sumali na ako dati sa Baste pero iba sa PBA. Mas maraming manonood at ‘yug mga makakalaban mo lalo na sila Papa Rey, between the legs, si Newsome, mga high-flyers. Challenge sa akin kasi mababa lang ako tumalon,” said Perez.
Perez though promises a competitive All-Star Game between the Rookies/Sophomores against Juniors on Friday night.
“Nanood ba kayo ng practice namin kanina? Go hard kami sa practice kaya humanda ‘yung mga Juniors. Baka mapalaban sila,” Perez said.