Teng aching to prove his worth | Tempo

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Jeron Teng is so eager to show the Alaska Aces that he’s worthy of being the team’s fifth overall selection in the PBA Rookie Draft that he vows to do everything he can to earn his way to the top.

La Salle’s Jeron Teng quickly sets a game play after scoring during the UAAP Finals Game 1 match against Ateneo at MOA Arena in Pasay, December 3, 2016 (RIO LEONELLE DELUVIO)

Alaska didn’t hesitate in choosing the former La Salle star after Blackwater and Phoenix decided to draft Raymar Jose and Jason Perkins, respectively, to firm up their frontcourt crew.

Aces coach Alex Compton had described Teng as a rookie who can make an immediate impact, which Teng hopes to fulfill.

“I’m for the challenger pero alam ko na siyempre PBA-level na ‘to and I have to start from zero,” Teng said.

“Siyempre mag-start ako sa pinakamababa and I have to work for my minutes. If I have to do, then I’ll do it, I’ll work hard even more.”

Teng will bolster a team that is out to bounce back from a disappointing campaign that saw the Aces miss the quarterfinals of the Commissioner’s Cup and Governors’ Cup marred by a 14-game losing skid in between the two conferences.

Compton, who had seen Teng back in high school with Xavier School, feels that it had selected a player who has shown maturity to play in the big leagues.

“I thought this kid’s gonna be one of the top picks, one of the those top three guys,” Compton said. “He can get you shifting some way. He’s quick but then if he just reach you by a quarter step he can power through the defense and he’s able to get to the freethrow line so much ’cause the guys foul him trying to get the ball.

“He’s got wide shoulders, he can pivot and something I really like as he’s gotten older, he’s able to find the open man more when he drives. So it’s not just to the basket, now, it’s to the basket while finding an open man. That’s a sign of growth and maturity,” he added.

Teng’s learning curve will see him play alongside Alaska star Calvin Abueva, who he had faced before as a La Salle freshman during a collegiate tournament in 2012.

He’ll also deal with the Aces’ system which emphasizes on pressure defense, something Teng is familiar during last year’s UAAP title run by La Salle under coach Aldin Ayo’s similar scheme called “Mayhem.”

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