BIG man June Mar Fajardo just showed a glimpse of what exactly he can do both in the recent PBA Governors Cup playoffs and Finals.
And for the people guiding the career of the young center from Pinamungahan, Cebu, this is only the beginning.
Petron team consultant Todd Purves believes the 24-year-old Fajardo will only get better following an impressive rookie season that saw him emerge as a potential franchise player of the Boosters especially during the season-ending conference.
“I think he’s just scratching the surface of who he’s gonna be as a player,” Purves disclosed to Spin.ph. “I thought he had a great playoffs this conference.”
Fajardo was so dominant a presence for the Boosters during the best-of-seven championship series against San Mig Coffee that had Petron won the title, he would've been the hands-down choice as Finals Most Valuable Player.
Unfortunately, the Boosters fell short after losing the Game Seven, 87-77, despite Fajardo submitting numbers of 20 points and eight rebounds.
Still, coach Gee Abanilla considers the emergence of his young rookie as one the positive things to come out of Petron’s ill-fated Finals experience.
“Lumabas `yung laro niya sa conference na ito. I just thought June Mar really gained a lot of confidence,” said Abanila of the top overall pick in the last draft. “Skills-wise andun naman talaga `yun. He was really dominant.”
Skills and the fact that Fajardo has a great working attitude augur well for the future of this rising superstar, according to Purves.
“He is a wonderful young man. I love working with him because he’s coachable. He’s got a lot of character and integrity,” said the former NBA scout.
With the new PBA season set to start three weeks from now, both Purves and Abanilla warned the league to brace for another giant step from Fajardo.
“I expect him to continue to get better. I don’t know what the other teams are going to be able to do, but I expect June Mar’s growth is going to be exponential as things move forward,” said Purves, the former coach of the Indonesian Warriors in the Asean Basketball League (ABL).
“And I look forward to him becoming a really good big man in this league.”
Abanilla added, “Maraming pahihirapan `yung bata.”