Seeing himself in versatile, athletic player Gabe Norwood and streak shooter Matthew Wright would certainly put Jamie Malonzo in a better position in the coming PBA Rookie Draft.
Like Norwood, a two-time PBA champion, a former slam dunk champion, a many-time All-Star, and a national team member many times before, Malonzo also possesses some of the physique and qualities of the PBA veteran star.
“He’s of my similar body type, so I see a little bit of me in him. He likes to dunk as well. So, I definitely see some of my game in him,” Malonzo said.
Malonzo plays the big guard, small forward, and power forward positions, and at 6’6”, his size and athleticism would certainly give him an edge among the PBA Rookie Draft hopefuls.
He had a solid run playing for La Salle during the team’s one-and-done season in 2019 and his exposure in the PBA D-League with Marinerong Pilipino and Mighty Sports team in the Dubai International Tournament gave him a taste of what Philippine basketball is all about.
But it’s not just the size and athleticism that makes Malonzo a logical choice for a team looking for a game-changer as he also had a decent shot from the perimeter. It’s not surprising why he picked Wright as one of those PBA stars whom he can pattern his game after.
“I definitely like Matthew Wright’s style of play. He’s definitely a shooter. It’s something I’m taking pride as well, being able to shoot the basketball,” he added.
On March 14, Malonzo’s name is expected to be called early in the Draft as any among Terrafirma Dyip, NorthPort, and NLEX, teams which will have the first three picks in the first round, are likely to select this versatile, athletic player and make him a part of the team’s future.
Malonzo is excited on Draft Day and although he’s still in the US continuously working his game through personal training, he can’t wait on the prospect of his name being called up early.
“All of these, the top (PBA) pick ideas and UAAP, stuff we talked about are about more than a year now, the top pick is in the works right now and I’m excited it’s finally coming,” he added.