After a rollercoaster last two months, Monique Del Carmen has finally found a home.
Del Carmen, the 25th overall pick in the 2021 WNBL Draft, signed with the Taguig Lady Generals.
She made the revelation during an episode of WNBL Baseline.
“Sa Taguig Lady Generals po ako ngayon maglalaro,” the 5-foot-6 winger bared.
The product of National University was initially picked by Pacific Water, but was not signed by the team.
It turned into a blessing in disguise, as Taguig immediately picked up Del Carmen after joining the league following the draft. In Taguig, the UAAP Season 82 Finals Most Valuable Player will be one of the marquee players of the team.
“Sobrang thankful ako sa Taguig na kinuha nila ako despite of my injury and everything that happened to me during the pandemic,” shared Del Carmen.
Back in the draft, many “pundits” wondered why Del Carmen went so low in the selection.
For Del Carmen, she felt surprised that she was even picked after the year she had that saw her tear her ACL back on March 10, 2020.
“Di ko naman ine-expect na madra-draft talaga ako e. Na-ACL kasi ako.
“Parang hindi naman masama mag-try e, kaysa hindi ako magpasa at mag-regret one day,” she said about the draft.
Despite the limitations she experienced in rehab and training because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the 22-year-old still persevered. She even took part in the WNBL Draft Combine just nine months into her recovery.
“Doon sa process, for me, naging blessing in disguise siya. Parang pinalakas pa Niya ‘yung loob ko na bumalik ako ng basketball. Nung na-injure ako, sobrang na-down ako e. Ang daming opportunity na pumapasok tapos biglang ganun ‘yung nangyari. Pero ‘yung pandemic naging blessing in disguise siya kasi walang nangyari,” she recalled.
“Sobrang confident ko nung draft combine kasi kaya ko naman e. Siyempre tiwala po ako sa Kanya. Ginawa ko lang din ‘yung kaya kong gawin nung time na ‘yun. Sobrang confident ako noon kasi wala na ‘ko nararamdaman noon at nakukuha ko na ‘yung laro ko.”
Del Carmen vows to repay the trust given to her by Taguig, planning to bring the winning mentality she had with NU to the Lady Generals.
After all, Taguig has taken care of her since signing on the dotted line late February.
“Dun sa team namin, sobrang organized nila. Sobrang alaga nila sa team. Nakakatuwa kasi ramdam mo pro ka na talaga.”