MAGNOLIA has activated sophomore guard Jio Jalalon in time for a match against KIA Picanto in the PBA Philippine Cup on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Gilas cadet member will make his season debut against the Picanto after he was reactivated on Monday in lieu of Gryann Mendoza, who was relegated to the injured/reserved list.
“Yes, he’s ready to play,” confirmed coach Chito Victolero of Jalalon in a short message on Tuesday.
Jalalon likewise showed up in Gilas Pilipinas’ first practice for the year on Monday night as the team resumed its training for the FIBA World Cup qualifier. The 5-foot-9 Magnolia young gun was even among the early birds at the Meralco gym among members of Chot Reyes’ regular 16-man pool.
The 25-year-old playmaker out of Arellano underwent surgery during the off-season to remove bone spurs on his foot that made him miss the Hotshots’ first two games against Alaska and Barangay Ginebra.
Magnolia split its first two matches, winning over the Aces, 108-95, but losing to the Kings in their traditional Christmas Day match-up, 89-78.
Jalalon's comeback left big man Rafi Reavis as the only injured player in the Hotshots’ regular rotation.