Jio Jalalon sees crowded Star backcourt not as competition, but a chance to learn from best
Jio Jalalon officially joins the Star Hotshots during the PBA draft. Jerome Ascano

JIO Jalalon doesn’t mind joining a crowded backcourt rotation at Star.

Just being drafted by the franchise he rooted for was already a dream come true for the Gilas cadet.

“Ito yung team na pinapanood ko talaga nung nandun pa si Tim Cone,” said Jalalon, who was selected by the Hotshots from the 12-man Gilas Pilipinas pool during the special PBA draft on Sunday at Robinsons Midtown in Ermita, Manila.

“Sobrang saya ko na kinuha nila ako.”

The drafting of the do-it-all star of the Arellano Chiefs in the NCAA added another playmaker to a Star side that is already loaded with players in that position.

But Jalalon sees the crowded backcourt not as competition but a chance to learn from the best, saying he’s willing to learn under the wings of veterans Paul Lee, Mark Barroca, and RR Garcia.

"Malaking experience ang matututunan ko sa kanila," Jalalon said of his veteran teammates, who was with him in the Star Hotshots table.

And being the youngest and newest member of the Hotshots' backcourt, Jio said he's more than willing to do whatever he's asked about by coach Chtio Victolero.

"Kahit ang dami naming point guards, kung anuman ang ipagawa sa akin ni coach, gagawin ko talaga," he said.

The Gilas cadet however, doesn't mind if he ended up being selected by other teams outside of Star.

"Ibigay ko lang yung best ko at kung anuman yung meron akong talent," he added when asked what he could offer once he's in the pro league.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @gerardmos