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Tiebreaker Times


Justine Baltazar withdraws from PBA Draft

Justine Baltazar has withdrawn his name from the PBA Season 47 Draft.

Commissioner Willie Marcial bared that the La Salle standout’s camp had already sent a letter on Thursday to formalize his pullout, indeed a tough blow for teams hoping to acquire his services in the proceedings set on Sunday.

The 25-year-old winger was projected as a Top Three pick.

“Nag-withdraw siya, may letter na binigay sa’tin kanina na pormal niyang wini-withdraw ang paga-apply niya sa draft this year,” said the league chieftain shortly after the Draft Combine at the Gatorade Hoops Center in Mandaluyong.

The reason behind this, according to Marcial, is an offer from Japan. And Baltazar’s camp could not commit if he can go back to the PBA next year, so the amiable exec advised the Kapampangan to finish his commitment in the B.League.

Tiebreaker Times earlier reported that Baltazar was set to sign a deal with a Japanese club last Friday.

“Sabi ko para ‘di maipit ‘yung bata, ‘di maipit ‘yung team, nagkausap kami ng maganda na mag-Japan muna siya tapos tsaka siya bumalik ‘pag okay na.

“Sabi niya, ‘Sige.’ So gumawa ng letter na nagpapa-excuse nga dahil baka maipit nga ang team na kukuha sa kanya pati siya, pati PBA. Naging fair naman siya sa lahat. So, okay naman sa atin,” Marcial elaborated.

Baltazar submitted his application papers just before the deadline last May 7, a day after the Green Archers saw the bitter end of their UAAP Season 84 campaign in the hands of University of the Philippines in the Final Four.

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The former Gilas Pilipinas forward, however, was a no-show in the two-day Combine, citing a foot injury he suffered against Adamson in the eliminations.

Baltazar averaged 12.6 points, 10.8 rebounds, 3.07 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks in 15 games played in his final year in Taft.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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