28-year-old Rodriguez picked 19th by Rain or Shine
Gregory Slaughter landing at the Barangay Ginebra Kings as the number one overall pick was a no-brainer. What was surprising was the selection of another former University of the Visayas (UV) Green Lancer in yesterday’s PBA Rookie Draft.
Not much has been heard about Jayford Rodriguez in the past few years until his name was called by the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters as the 19th overall pick in yesterday’s activity where 44 among 79 hopefuls were drafted.
“I am so happy that I was drafted. I didn’t expect it because there were several applicants,” Rodriguez said in Cebuano in an interview with Cebu Daily News right after the Draft.
The 28-year-old Rodriguez, known for his killer crossover moves and accurate outside shooting, graduated from UV in 2006 with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.
Since then, the Duljo-Fatima native played with several commercial teams in local basketball tournaments, including stints with the multi-titled M. Lhuillier Jewelers.
“I just played pick-up games when I was no longer a member of any basketball team to stay in shape. It’s my dream to play in the PBA so I took the courage to join the draft,” he said.
While waiting for the draft, Rodriguez stayed with JR Quiñahan, who is also a former-UV player now playing for Rain or Shine.
Quiñahan and Rodriguez graduated from college in the same year. While Rodriguez was strutting his stuff in commercial tournaments in Cebu, Quiñahan found his way to the pro-league when he was drafted by the Alaska Aces as the seventh overall pick in the 2007 Rookie Draft.
“I am just hoping that I will be signed. If lucky enough, I’ll do my best to show what I can do in the league. I think I have what it takes to compete,” said Rodriguez.
ANOTHER CEBUANO IN PBA
Aside from Slaughter and Rodriguez, another Cebuano player was chosen in draft as Eliud Poligrates from Camotes Island was taken by the Talk ‘N Text Tropang Texters as the 27th pick.
Drafted players who will not be signed and those undrafted applicants will automatically become free agents.
It also came as no surprise that Ian Sanggalang and Raymond Almazan were chosen by the San Mig Coffee Mixers as the second and third picks overall, respectively.
Barako Bull traded its fourth pick to Ginebra which used the pick to acquire James Forrester. In the deal, Barako Bull got Rico Maierhofer and Willy Wilson. The Energy Colas also traded their fifth pick to the Petron Blaze Boosters, who then gave away its turn to GlobalPort Batang Pier.
The Batang Pier used the deal in snagging Terrence Romeo while Barako Bull got Magi Sison and Mark Isip. Petron received Yousef Taha from GlobalPort.
Barako Bull also gave away its sixth pick to GlobalPort in exchange for Denok Miranda. GlobalPort used the deal to get RR Garcia.
For its seventh pick, the Batang Pier got Isaac Holstein while the Alaska Aces tabbed Ryan Buenafe as the eighth overall pick. Rain or Shine snagged Alex Nuyles with the ninth pick, while the Coffee Mixers closed out the first round by picking Justin Chua as the 10th overall pick.
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