THERE is a likelihood that the PBA will no longer hold a special draft for Gilas Pilipinas and instead work out a new agreement on on-loan players.
Instead of a special Gilas draft, PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said there are plans on a new set-up that will enable Gilas coach Chot Reyes to handpick players from the draft pool that will be on-call to the national team.
Under the set-up, Marcial said these players can be drafted by the PBA teams and will be allowed to play for their mother teams in the course of a season - unless called up by the national team.
The players will also be made to sign contracts with their mother teams and not with the SBP.
Previously, players picked in the special Gilas draft were released on loan to the national team and were not allowed to play for their mother PBA teams unless released.
The PBA commissioner said they will soon come up with a final decision on the Gilas draft before the May 15 rookie draft at Robinsons Place Manila.
“Nag-uusap pa rin kami ng SBP. Kausap ko nga rin si Coach Chot kanina," said Marcial. Kapag walang practice ang Gilas, puwedeng maglaro sa mother team. Tapos ‘yung kontrata, sa mother team na rin.”
“Bago mag-draft, mapaplantsa na namin kung paano, kung may Gilas draft o wala. Pero malamang, walang Gilas draft. Kailangan lang nila sabihin kung sino ang gusto nila. Three or four names lang naman ang sasabihin nila,” said Marcial.
The special Gilas draft has been in place for years and was revived in 2019, but the draftees from that year in Isaac Go, Rey Suerte, Matt Nieto, Allyn Bulanadi, and Mike Nieto have all been released to their PBA teams during the course of last season.
The special draft was again done in 2020, with Jordan Heading, Will Navarro, Tzaddy Rangel, and Jaydee Tungcab picked. From that batch, onnly Heading and Navarro have yet to be released by the SBP.
Heading have since been taken his act to the Taiwan pro league.
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