Incoming rookie Jio Jalalon is indeed being groomed as the future of the Star Hotshots in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
Believing the talented freshman can help the franchise regain its old glory, the Hotshots signed Jalalon to a three-year deal amounting to P7 million on Thursday.
The Gilas draftee of Star hopes to continue the success he enjoyed in college, after leading the Arellano University Chiefs to two straight National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) finals appearances despite standing just 5-foot-9.
“Tuloy ko lang ginagawa ko para makatulong sa team. Sana magawa ko rin ‘yung mga nagawa ko sa NCAA dito sa PBA,” said Jalalon.
The point guard will join forces with new acquisition Paul Lee, Mark Barroca, Peter June Simon and Justin Melton in a crowded and loaded backcourt for Star.
The Hotshots shipped guards RR Garcia and Alex Mallari in succession last week, leaving the spotlight to the newcomers and holdovers, as new Star coach Chito Victolero will count on them to lead.
A solid playmaker, Jalalon has been considered the top point guard in the amateur ranks the past few years as he was the face of Arellano and led the Chiefs to finals appearances against Letran College and San Beda College in the NCAA.
Over at the TNT Katropa camp, the Tropang Texters are bound to remain intact after they re-signed veterans Kelly Williams and Reyes Reyes. They were both given two-year pacts, with Williams expected to earn the maximum Php10.08 million and Reyes signing for over Php8 million.