Malonzo, Rike ink rookie deals with Batang Pier

Published April 19, 2021, 2:46 PM

by Jonas Terrado

NorthPort rookies Jamie Malonzo and Troy Rike are joined by team manager Bonnie Tan, center, after signing their contracts Monday April 19. Also in the photo are Malonzo’s agent PJ Pilares and Rike’s representative Marvin Espiritu. (Photo from Bonnie Tan)

NorthPort finally signed Jamie Malonzo and Troy Rike to rookie contracts more than a month after being taken in the first round of the PBA Draft.

Team manager Bonnie Tan met with Malonzo and Rike Monday, April 19 to finalize the deals after a brief delay due to the stoppage of practices caused by the implementation of stricter community quarantine regulations.

They were also joined by Malonzo’s agent PJ Pilares and Rike’s representative Marvin Espiritu.

Malonzo, the No. 2 pick in the draft, agreed to a three-year deal while 11th overall selection Rike was signed for two years.

The Batang Pier are banking on the two neophytes in hopes of bouncing back from last season’s 1-10 record inside the PBA bubble.

Expected to play a big role is Malonzo, the 6-foot-7 former La Salle star who is known for his athleticism and capability to play multiple positions.

Rike, who played for National University and the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3×3, is likely to play backup to new addition Greg Slaughter.

Slaughter was acquired by NorthPort from Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in exchange for Christian Standhardinger earlier last month.