A WEEK before the first-ever draft of the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) takes place, the league held a virtual draft lottery to pick the order of selections on Sunday evening.
The inaugural draft set for Feb. 13 though will be unique in the sense that the teams in the first-ever women’s professional basketball league in the country will not be picking in every round.
This, after all the teams were given a chance to “protect” at most seven players. Guest team Go for Gold-Philippine Navy Lady Sailors were not part of the lottery since all of their players must be enlisted armed forces members.
For only protecting three players, Glutagence Glow Boosters had 12 picks — including being the only team allowed to draft in the first two rounds.
Stan Quezon Lady Spartan protected five players giving them 10 picks, Pacific Water Queens had six protect players giving them nine picks, while WNBL original Parañaque Lady Aces had seven players signed that resulted in the team getting just eight picks.
Two more teams are expected to give the league’s office their proper papers this week. The first team to accomplish the task will be awarded the remaining picks in each round, still subject to the number of protected players they submit.
In the third round of the draft, Glutagence once again picks first followed by Stan Quezon. The fourth round will see Stan Quezon, Pacific Water, and Glutagence pick, in that order.
The fifth round has Stan Quezon picking first anew then Pacific Water, Parañaque, and Glutagence. Parañaque picks first in the sixth round followed by Glutagence, Pacific Water, and Stan Quezon.
Again in the seventh round, the Aces get first dibs while following suit are Lady Spartans, the Queens, and the Boosters.
Pacific Water gets its first top pick of a round in the eighth followed by Stan Quezon, Glutagence, and Paranaque.
The Boosters will open things off in round nine with the Queens, Aces, and Lady Spartans picking next, in that order.
Rounds 10 and 12 have identical order with Parañaque, Pacific Water, Stan Quezon, and Glutagence drafting while round 11 has the Aces still picking first followed by the Boosters, the Queens, and the Lady Spartans.
A total of 115 players will compose the league’s first draft class — all of whom took part in the Draft Combine last Dec. 12 to 13.
“On behalf of Chairman Celso Mercado and NBL Commissioner Edward Aquino, we would like to extend our congratulations to all our WNBL teams and advance congratulations to the 115 dreamers as we are just one week away from making their dreams happen,” said WNBL Executive Vice-President Rhose Montreal in a statement.
The lottery was supervised by Games and Amusements Board’s Assistant Chief of Pro Basketball and Pro Games division Rodil Manaog.