Isaac Go and Roosevelt Adams, selected by the Columbian Dyip as the top picks, led the 45 aspirants who were drafted in the 2019 PBA Rookie Draft Sunday at the Robinson's Place Manila.
Go, a big man from Ateneo, was picked first in the special Gilas Pilipinas draft, which was intended for players who will be part of the training pool for the 2023 FIBA World Cup before they suit up for their PBA teams.
"It's an incredible feeling," said Go. "(The special draft) came as a surprise, but then afterward, I was so grateful that it fell in line with my plan to enter the PBA so I'm just really at a loss for words."
UE's Rey Suerte (Blackwater), Ateneo's Matt Nieto (NLEX), San Sebastian's Allyn Bulanadi (Alaska), and Ateneo's Mike Nieto (Rain or Shine) completed the top five special draftees.
Adams, on the other hand, emerged as the first overall pick in the regular draft. The Fil-American forward is expected to form an explosive tandem with Dyip star and last year's top pick CJ Perez.
"I've been part of a lot of winning teams and I think I can bring my winning attitude to this team," said Adams. "I'm just excited for the season to start already."
Blackwater selected Maurice Shaw at no. 2, while Mike Ayonayon and Barkley Eboña landed with NLEX and Alaska, respectively.
Rain or Shine snagged the trio of Adrian Wong, Clint Doliguez, and Prince Rivero for its 5th to 7th picks.
Sean Manganti (NorthPort), Aris Dionisio (Magnolia), Arvin Tolentino (Ginebra), Kib Montalbo (TNT), and Christian Balugasay (Columbian) rounded out the first round draftees.
Letran's Jerrick Balanza slid to the top of the second round with the Gin Kings. The Elite got Richard Escoto at no. 14, then the Road Warriors took William McAtoney at no. 15.
The Aces used their back-to-back picks to get Rey Publico and Jaycee Marcelino before Meralco coach Norman Black drafted his son, Aaron, as the 18th selection.
Also grabbed in the second round are Vince Tolentino (Rain or Shine), AC Soberano (NLEX), Yankee Haruna (Magnolia), Kent Salado (Ginerba), Wendell Comboy (Rain or Shine), and Renzo Subido (NorthPort).
Phoenix and San Miguel, which only started picking in the third round, took Ralph Tansingco and Travis Thompson, respectively as the 29th and 36th selections.
Out of the 67 rookie aspirants, 22 names were not called on stage. The undrafted applicants will be eligible to apply to the Tatluhan sa PBA Tournament, a joint 3x3 endeavor with the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) which will have a separate draft next season.
Complete rookie list drafted per team:
Columbian - Isaac Go, Roosevelt Adams, Christian Balagasay, Bonbon Batiller, Marco Balagtas
Blackwater - Rey Suerte, Maurice Shaw, Richard Escoto, William McAloney, Chris Bitoon, Hubert Cani
NLEX - Matt Nieto, Mike Ayonayon, AC Soberano, Gelo Vito, Jayvee Marcelino, Jeramer Cabanag
Alaska - Allyn Bulanadi, Barkley Eboña, Rey Publico, Jaycee Marcelino
Rain or Shine - Mike Nieto, Adrian Wong, Clint Doliguez, Prince Rivero, Vince Tolentino, Wendell Comboy, Luke Parcero
NorthPort - Sean Manganti, Renzo Subido, Cris Dumapig, Dexter Zamora
Magnolia - Aris Dionisio, Yankee Haruna, Alvin Capobres
Ginebra - Arvin Tolentino, Jerrick Balanza, Kent Salado, Fran Asuncion
TNT - Kib Montalbo, Simon Camacho, Val Chauca
Meralco - Aaron Black, Michael Cañete
Phoenix - Ralph Tansingco, Spencer Pretta, Jeff Santos
San Miguel - Travis Thompson, Daniel de Guzman, John Von Jovi Tambeling