COLLEGE of St. Benilde wingman Mark Romero became the last man in for the PBA rookie draft's Class of 2014 after submitting his application past the deadline on Wednesday by the PBA.
The 6-foot-3 forward arrived at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City about 10 minutes past the deadline, but PBA commissioner Chito Salud accepted the application upon leaning that Romero had to rush from The Arena in San Juan after Benilde's game against University of Perpetual Help in the NCAA.
Asked why he was late, Romero said he was still having second thoughts about turning pro during the game itself, but told himself he'd apply for the draft if the Blazers win the game.
As fate would have it, the Blazers nosed out the Altas, 77-73.
“I’m thinking twice pa nga kanina eh, pero ang sabi ko sa sarili ko, kapag manalo, papa-draft na ako,” said Romero after becoming the 95th and last player in an all-time high draft pool to sign on for the August 24 draft.
Romero, a member of the Jumbo Plastic team that won this year’s PBA D-League 3-on-3 title, said Benilde assistant coach Monch Gavieres encouraged him to join this year’s draft.
The hardworking Blazers swingman said he’s thankful for the break he got from Benilde coach Gabby Velasco, as well as a decent showing he had the past season in the PBA D-League.
“Medyo maganda napakita ko dun (St. Benilde and Jumbo Platic). May mga ilang games din ako naging high scorer, though, sa St. Benilde, kaya lang ako nag-four kasi gusto ni coach mabilis ang game,” he added.
Romero was one of more than 20 aspirants submitted their application forms on Wednesday, led by NLEX stars Kevin Alas, Fil-Am Matt Ganuelas Rosser and Ronald Pascual.