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Saturday, October 8, 2011

PBA Rookies During the Early Years

I originally posted this in mypba.com on June 2, 2005. Thanks to Atty. Percival Flores for correcting some of the items.

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The finest amateur players that joined the PBA in the formative years mostly came from the MICAA. Here's a partial list:

Jimmy Taguines / Manilabank - joined the Tanduay Esquires in 1977 and became the PBA ROY; bruising power forward with a solid interior game

Virgilio Cortez / Manilabank - joined the Toyota Comets in 1976 and became the PBA ROY; excellent transition player recipient of the baseball pass from Jaworski and Fernandez

Jimmy Manansala / Yco - joined the Tanduay Esquires in 1978 and became the PBA ROY; hotshot standout who can drill baskets from out of range and eventually became a defense specialist in his latter years with Great Taste Coffee

Abe King / Frigidaire - joined the Toyota Comets in 1977; a strong force inside, perhaps the best power forward ever produced by the PBA

Arnie Tuadles / Manilabank & San Miguel Braves - joined the Toyota Tamaraws in 1979 and became the PBA's first ROY to earn a slot at the Mythical 5; a finesse forward known for his contra-tiempo moves inside the paint

Jojo De Guzman / Manilabank - played for the Tefilin Polyesters in 1981 as one of the oldest rookies to join the PBA back then; known for holding the PBA record once upon a time for making 5 out of 5 three point baskets in one game

Emerito Legaspi / Frigidaire - 5'10 off guard with a deadly range from all corners; joined the Toyota Tamaraws in 1978

Jimmy Javier / Crispa - joined the Crispa Redmanizers in 1978; bruited to be the most important big man to enter the league since its inception; at 6'5, he turned out to be a bust

Romulo Mamaril / Imperial Textile Mills - joined the Crispa Redmanizers in 1979; another topnotch center in the amateur league and was a many-time member of the national team due to his 6'6 ceiling; became more popular as MAMA while playing for the Ginebra San Miguel team

Pablo Javier / Frigidaire - perhaps the finest point guard of the MICAA during the mid to late 70's, he joined the Toyota Tamaraws in 1978 and was bruited to be the next coming of Robert Jaworski; a brother of Jimmy, at 6'1, he had the built of the Big J but that was all there was to him

Hector Calma / Solid Mills & APCOR - considered as the most complete point guard ever to be produced by the PBA; joined the league in 1986 as part of the NCC team that was absorbed by the Magnolia Cheesemakers; was part of the victorious 1977 Adamson Falcons team in the UAAP alongside elder brother Mon Calma; played for Solid Mills and APCOR but only as a backup to more renowned teammates Marte Saldaña (PBA ROY 1982) and Alex Clariño

Renato Lobo / Solid Mills - perhaps the finest shooter ever to come out of the MICAA in the mid-70's, he and teammate Anthony Dasalla were instrumental in giving Solid Mills two titles in 1976 and 1977. He joined the PBA in 1977 along with Tony Dasalla and played for their mother team U/Tex Wranglers. He never got untracked in the league though as his sweet-shooting finesse game couldn't hold its fort in the physical game of the pro league

Tony Dasalla / Solid Mills - bruited to be the next Ramon Fernandez, the 6'4 former FEU Tamaraw was part of the 1-2 punch of Solid Mills when they won the titles in 1976 and 1977. Dasalla likewise joined U/Tex alongside Lobo in 1977 but likewise never hit it big in the pro league; his lean frame may have much to contribute for his non-success although no one can argue that Dasalla was the most important center in the MICAA during his time.

Willie Tanduyan / Imperial Textile Mills - perhaps the most gifted off guard in the MICAA during his time, he was capable of scorching the hoops with 40 points or more as he ended the MICAA season as the league's top marksman; he joined the PBA in 1978 as part of the fabled Crispa Redmanizers but because of the Redmanizers' deep bench, was never really given enough playing time to strut his stuff; he eventually landed a slot with the Gilbey's Gin team when the latter joined the league in 1979 and instantly became the team's captain ball for that season

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