• Ravena readies for 2016 PBA rookie draft

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    De La Salle University’s Jeron Teng (21) blocks the shot of Ateneo de Manila University’s Kiefer Ravena (15) during a University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 78 men’s basketball game at the Araneta Coliseum. PHOTO BY RUSSELL PALMA

    De La Salle University’s Jeron Teng (21) blocks the shot of Ateneo de Manila University’s Kiefer Ravena (15) during a University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 78 men’s basketball game at the Araneta Coliseum. PHOTO BY RUSSELL PALMA

    Two-time University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Most Valuable Player Kiefer Ravena is preparing himself to play professional basketball in 2016 after his playing years with the Ateneo De Manila University Blue Eagles ended in 2015.

    Ravena, the son of former professional cager Bong Ravena, is planning to enter the upcoming Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) rookie draft sometime in August.

    “I’m very willing to play for any team that needs me. I also like to play under a coach who will utilize my talent,” the 22-year-old Ravena told The Manila Times. “When it comes to the PBA, it’s about longevity of my career as a point guard.”

    Ravena, who was a member of the Philippine team during the 2015 Southeast Asian Games, decided not to play in the PBA Developmental League to avoid injury, as he turns pro.

    “I’m practicing with Talk ‘N Text and Gilas Pilipinas every Monday with coach Tab [Baldwin]. Too much basketball will result in fatigue and injury. I’m focusing more on strength and conditioning because I need to be more physically tough. I just want to be ready when I play in the PBA,” Ravena said.

    Ravena was a member of the Blue Eagles when the team won the UAAP championship in 2011 and 2012. He led Ateneo to the UAAP Final Four with an average of 18.2 points, 6.1 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 1.2 steals per game during the elimination round.

    “I’m focusing on how to be a better basketball player, a player who dominates the game without scoring that much like Chris Paul of NBA,” added Ravena. “That’s what I wanted to become when I play in the PBA, but I really need to train hard.”

    JOSEF T. RAMOS

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