PBA: TerraFirma selects Joshua Munzon as first overall pick

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 14 2021 04:31 PM | Updated as of Mar 14 2021 05:08 PM

PBA: TerraFirma selects Joshua Munzon as first overall pick 1

Malonzo goes second, Oftana third

MANILA, Philippines -- (2nd UPDATE) After giving up two-time scoring champion CJ Perez in a controversial trade, TerraFirma Dyip has picked up another potential franchise cornerstone in Joshua Munzon.

The Dyip took the Filipino-American swingman with the first overall pick of the PBA Season 46 Rookie Draft, held in a virtual ceremony on Sunday.

In Munzon, TerraFirma has a player who can immediately anchor their offense in much the same way that Perez did for the past two seasons. The 26-year-old Munzon comes in with plenty of experience thanks to stints in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) and the FIBA 3x3 circuit.

He is the third straight top overall pick made by TerraFirma, after Perez in 2018 and Roosevelt Adams in 2019. 

"I'm super honored, super excited to be in this position," said Malonzo. "I'm ready to come in and get to work."

Meanwhile, NorthPort made De La Salle University's Jamie Malonzo the second overall pick, giving star point guard Robert Bolick another running mate.

Malonzo made an immediate impact in his lone season with the Green Archers and made the UAAP Mythical Five in 2019. The Batang Pier expect him to be a contributor from Day 1 as he joins a squad that recently added former top pick Greg Slaughter through a trade with Barangay Ginebra.

The NLEX Road Warriors continued their build-up for the upcoming season by taking reigning NCAA Most Valuable Player Calvin Oftana with the No. 3 pick.

Oftana, who has also suited up for the Philippine national team, opted to forego his final season of eligibility with San Beda to declare for the Rookie Draft. An athletic forward, he projects to be a two-way force for Coach Yeng Guiao and the Road Warriors.

With the No. 4 pick, the TNT Tropang GIGA selected Mikey Williams. The Fil-Am point guard is expected to make an immediate impact for a TNT team that lost Ray Parks Jr. to a sabbatical just last week.

The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, with the fifth pick, selected former De La Salle big man Leonard "Santi" Santillan. Like Munzon, Santillan shone in the FIBA 3x3 circuit before declaring for the PBA Rookie Draft this season. 

Alaska selected former Perpetual Help center Ben Adamos sixth overall, where he will try to help lift a team that traded away All-Star forward Vic Manuel to Phoenix Super LPG. Adamos previously played for San Beda, but transferred to Perpetual where he got a bigger spotlight while playing for Coach Frankie Lim.

Phoenix Super LPG, a team that stacked up in the offseason, added more heft and firepower in their frontline by adding former Letran star Larry Muyang with the seventh overall pick. Muyang is a former NCAA Rookie of the Year who helped the Knights win the championship in 2019.

With their second pick of the first round, TerraFirma selected James Laput with the eighth pick. Laput, at 6-foot-10, is the tallest player in the Rookie Draft and will be immediately asked to contribute to the Dyip in their frontcourt.

Meralco added scoring machine Alvin Pasaol with the ninth overall pick. A former star of University of the East, Pasaol skipped the draft in 2019 to focus on the FIBA 3x3 circuit, and became the No. 2 ranked 3x3 player in the country just behind Munzon.

With the tenth pick, the Magnolia Hotshots took Jerrick Ahanmisi from Adamson University. A former UAAP Mythical Team member, Ahanmisi is known as one of the best shooters in college basketball.

NorthPort bolstered its frontcourt by selecting Troy Rike with the 11th overall pick. A one-and-done at National University, Rike also played in the FIBA 3x3 circuit before declaring for the PBA Rookie Draft this year.

Barangay Ginebra closed out the first round by taking former Far Eastern University big man Ken Holmqvist with the 12th overall pick.