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    Thirdy Ravena skips PBA Rookie Draft to focus on overseas training

    Nov 29, 2019
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascano

    COLLEGE basketball star Thirdy Ravena has decided to skip the 2019 PBA Rookie Draft.

    There was no application on behalf of the former Ateneo Blue Eagles star filed at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City at the end of office hours on Friday, leaving this year's rookie pool without its consensus No. 1 pick.

    Sources said the high-flying guard has decided to skip the draft to devote more time to self-improvement, with an eye on overseas training and, if possible, competition.

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    The decision of the three-time UAAP Finals MVP to forego turning pro leaves 71 aspirants in the pool during the annual rookie selection process set on December 8.

    Ateneo big man Isaac Go headlines the list, together with Letran captain Jerrick Balanza, San Sebastian sniper Allyn Bulanadi, super scorer Rey Suerte, and Blue Eagles Matt and Mike Nieto.

    Columbian owns the top pick in the draft, with Blackwater picking second and NLEX third.

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      PBA commissioner Willie Marcial confirmed that Ravena called him up on Thursday to relay his decision, which the college star said he reached in consultation with dad Bong and mom Mozzy.

      "I wished him the best. I told him to do what he thinks is best for him and his family," said Marcial. "Pero sabi ko sa kanya, dapat next year magpa-draft na s'ya."

      Sources said Ravena has also received feelers to play in leagues in Japan and Australia.

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      Ravena now follows the path taken by older brother Kiefer, who trained for a year in the US and played briefly in the NBA G-League before being taken No. 2 overall by NLEX in the 2017 draft behind Christian Standhardinger.

      Sean Manganti and Roosevelt Adams also banner the Fil-foreign players who are ready to make the jump to the pros.

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      These aspirants have a chance to show their mettle at the Draft Combine, set on Dec. 4 to 5 at Gatorade Hoops Center in Shaw.

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      PHOTO: Jerome Ascano
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