Two weeks ago, I launched my PBA Rookie Rankings for the 2022 PBA Philippine Cup.
Anyway, two weeks later, San Miguel, Meralco, and NLEX have yet to display a single neophyte... and Ginebra and Magnolia barely featured theirs. Also, apart from the cameo appearances, we have seen a couple of rookies get DNPs due to injuries.
At least we get one debut.
Here are the ten best rookies of the current conference.
10 | BRANDON GANUELAS-ROSSER - BLACKWATER
RD 1 | PICK 1 | UC-RIVERSIDE HIGHLANDERS
PREVIOUS RANK: NEW ENTRY
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 8.0PPG, 1.0RPG, 1.0SPG
Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser was cautiously brought in by Blackwater but he had a respectable debut - scoring eight points and at least as "1" in the other counting stat categories (except for assists). Definitely, his entry could enhance Blackwater's SF/PF spot.
9 | TYRUS HILL - CONVERGE
RD 1 | PICK 7 | DLSU GREEN ARCHERS
PREVIOUS RANK: 8
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 5.0PPG, 3.6RPG, 0.4BPG
Tyrus Hill continues to find his niche in the Converge rotation. In his second to the last game, Hill had 15 points and 2 rebounds. With that said, he was held to a rebound in their last game. If Converge will go for an import that is more of an inside operator, then Hill needs to do his best to overtake his teammates on the depth chart.
8 | ENCHO SERRANO - PHOENIX
RD 2 | PICK 19 | DLSU GREEN ARCHERS
PREVIOUS RANK: 3
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 8.0PPG, 4.2RPG, 1.6APG
Encho Serrano's numbers have gone down as the season progressed and he also missed the last two games due to injury. He is probably going to get back up top once he returns to action and is given the opportunity to shine.
7 | GIAN MAMUYAC - RAIN OR SHINE
RD 1 | PICK 5 | ATENEO BLUE EAGLES
PREVIOUS RANK: 9
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 7.0PPG, 2.5RPG, 1.5SPG
Gian Mamuyac has been in and out of the Rain or Shine lineup and his latest DNP came after the game he scored 18 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals. Mamuyac is a good player to develop for the struggling Elastopainters but he needs to have consistent showings.
6 | JAVI GOMEZ DE LLANO - TERRAFIRMA
RD 1 | PICK 8 | UP FIGHTING MAROONS
PREVIOUS RANK: 7
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 5.7PPG, 4.8RPG, 1.8APG
Another player who had a rocky start, Javi GDL averaged 10.5 points and 3.5 rebounds during his last two games with Terrafirma. The former UP Fighting Maroon is slowly taking on more responsibilities and hopefully, this lead to better things for Terrafirma.
5 | TYLER TIO - PHOENIX
RD 2 | PICK 14 | ATENEO BLUE EAGLES
PREVIOUS RANK: 5
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 10.7PPG, 1.7RPG, 1.1APG
I get the thing about Tyler Tio. He may not have the other stats but he gets his minutes by getting open looks from the outside. His numbers dipped after his initial spurt but during his last two games, Tio averaged 15.5 points. I guess it's safe to say that Tio is basically what Chris Tiu could have been if never had the PG mindset.
4 | JEO AMBOHOT - CONVERGE
RD 1 | PICK 3 | LETRAN KNIGHTS
PREVIOUS RANK: 6
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 6.3PPG, 7.2RPG, 1.0BPG
It's funny that the Top 4 players on this list are NCAA-raised stars. I guess for as long as UAAP keeps their foreign student policy, I doubt if they can develop top frontliners. Like his Converge rookie tag team partner, Jeo Ambohot is doing his best - especially in the defensive end. He needs to step things up though - especially since the FiberXers finally got Abu Tratter back.
3 | JUSTIN ARANA - CONVERGE
RD 1 | PICK 4 | ARELLANO CHIEFS
PREVIOUS RANK: 1
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 7.0PPG, 8.2RPG, 1.3BPG
It's unfortunate that Arana started his PBA career like how he started his final NCAA season. Yup, Arana is now in sickbay nursing an ankle injury. But it's not that serious and along with Converge's long break, he could unleash his normal dose of almost double-doubles.
2 | JM CALMA - NORTHPORT
RD 1 | PICK 6 | SAN SEBASTIAN GOLDEN STAGS
PREVIOUS RANK: 4
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 10.3PPG, 6.6RPG, 1.1APG
Again, the loss of Greg Slaughter and Troy Rike paved the way for the rise of Giannis Anteto-Calma. The former San Sebastian Stag is putting on modest numbers and to think that he's playing alongside Robert Bolick, Arwind Santos, and Jamie Malonzo. In his last three games, Calma has flirted with double-double outputs.
1 | ATO ULAR - BLACKWATER
RD 2 | PICK 13 | LETRAN KNIGHTS
PREVIOUS RANK: 2
2022 PHL CUP (AS OF JUL 4) | 14.4PPG, 7.2RPG, 0.4SPG
The former Letran Knight gets the top spot and there's a thought about this that I don't like. Yes, Ular is defying the odds by getting these numbers and helping Blackwater get a winning record. During his last game, in fact, Ular had 19 points and 15 rebounds. But the thing about this is that we have seen this before with JP Erram, Brian Heruela, and Arthur Dela Cruz - players that excelled in Blackwater and were farmed by the bigger companies. Maybe Blackwater has turned a new leaf?
Anyway, see you in two weeks.