The Columbian Dyip are intent of keeping CJ Perez for the long run after the former NCAA Most Valuable Player was selected as the top overall pick in yesterday’s PBA Rookie Draft at Robinsons Place Manila.
Columbian team governor Bobby Rosales made it known after making good on his promise to get the 25-year-old Pangasinense who rose to star status after leading the Lyceum Pirates to back-to-back appearances in the NCAA finals.
Dyip coach Johnedel Cardel made the announcement as PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial reverted back to the old practice of letting teams reveal their pick in front of the public.
One question now is whether Perez can be the one who can turn the fortunes of a Columbian squad that won just six games last season.
Another is the length of Perez’s contract which Rosales and their prized pick will discuss in the foreseeable future.
Perez can get a maximum deal of three years worth P10.44 million under the league’s new rule on rookie contracts.
Sources said a rookie can get a max contract of P200,000 a month on his first year, P250,000 on the second and P420,000 on the third.
Of course, that possibility remains to be seen as Perez, his representatives and Columbian officials sit down on the negotiating table.
“It’s a dream come true for me,” said the 25-year-old Perez after accepting a cap and jacket containing the logo and colors of the Columbian franchise.
Blackwater went with reigning two-time ASEAN Basketball League Most Valuable Player Ray Parks Jr. with the second overall selection, arguably the best player after Perez.
Parks wasn’t around when his name was announced due to his commitment to play for San Miguel Alab Pilipinas in last night’s ABL match against CLS Knights Indonesia in Surabaya.
Blackwater has shown intention to make Parks as soon as possible, though the former National University star insisted days earlier that he is obligated to fulfill his duties with Alab, which is seeking a second straight ABL title.
That will be another thing that Parks and Blackwater will have to settle.
NorthPort chose at No. 3 Robert Bolick, who hopes to bring his knack of delivering in the clutch to the pro ranks.
NLEX coach Yeng Guiao surprised everyone by taking Paul Desiderio as the fourth overall selection. His stock rose after leading University of the Philippines to an unlikely finals berth in the UAAP.
Guiao made the announcement in his best Desiderio impersonation.
“Sa amin na ‘to (He’s our),” Guiao said.
Fil-American guard Trevis Jackson, who starred in the PBA D-League, was picked fifth by Meralco, Rain or Shine went with former San Beda star Javee Mocon, NLEX took one-time La Salle cager Abu Tratter, Rain or Shine got ex-National University guard J-Jay Alejandro.
Alaska took unheralded Lyceum guard MJ Ayaay at No. 9, fellow PBA Governors’ Cup finalist Magnolia picked San Sebastian’s Michael Calisaan, Columbian named Letran’s JP Calvo as the 11th pick and Phoenix took Technological Institute of the Philippines’ Jorey Napoles.