ALASKA veteran slotman Sonny Thoss was the first to admit Petron young
center June Mar Fajardo has improved leaps and bounds since arriving in the PBA only a season ago.
Unlike in his rookie season when Thoss would outwit the 24-year-old Fajardo with his veteran smarts and experience, this year the former University of Cebu standout has developed into a force in the low block, according to the 6-foot-7 Alaska center
“He’s (Fajardo) improved leaps and bounds. He’s amazing now, playing tough basketball,” Thoss told Spin.ph after Saturday night’s game between Alaska and Petron, which the Boosters won by a hairline, 86-85.
Thoss confessed having a hard time defending the post now against Fajardo, who, despite being heavier, moves well for his size, while being quick on the ball whenever he goes for the rebound.
“He’s dominating the boards. He’s doing a great job in the paint. He’s got great moves inside, while he uses his body as well to get good position in the paint,” he added.
Fajardo was all business against the Aces, firing a game-high 20 points, grabbing 12 rebounds and adding two blocks.
The pride of Pinamungahan, Cebu actually scored Petron’s last seven points, allowing the Boosters to keep their unblemished record after five games this season.
With Fajardo’s growing dominance in the league, Thoss wishes him nothing but the best, while hoping Alaska could soon find a way to contain Petron’s emerging star.
“I hope he can continue to grow that way. I’m really proud of him,” he said. “But I think we need to figure something out, double or triple-team him, though there are a lot of options for Petron, a lot of wings and guards, so we need to figure a way and find a balance on defense.”