Justine Baltazar has yet to announce his decision on whether or not to forgo his last playing year in UAAP or stay with the Green Archers.

/ 21 December 2020

Baltazar is yet to make a huge decision for his basketball career in the coming days as rumors of left and right offers to join the Gilas class of the 2021 PBA Rookie draft and to play abroad pops up.

Photos from Pampanga coach Istle Santos showing Gilas program director Tab Baldwin talking to both Baltazar and governor Delta Pineda at Pradera Verde in Lubao made noise on social media.

Meanwhile, many basketball fans speculated that Green Archers’ Baltazar has a huge possibility to join the Gilas Draft.

It is the practice that coaches, managers, and agents must first pay a visit to Pineda to court one of his players, which include the likes of Arwind Santos, Calvin Abueva—all the way down to UAAP Season 82 High School Boys’ Basketball MVP Jake Figueroa.

However, the 6-foot-7 big man still has one more playing year left with the DLSU.

During UAAP Season 82, the 23-year-old posted norms of 15.14 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 1.07 blocks per game to finish second in the MVP race.

Just after Season 82, Baltazar then included in the lineup for Pineda’s NBL team Pampanga. There, he recorded an average of 13.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks in four games played.

Moreover, Baltazar failed to join the team in the league’s Finals after the NBL turned professional.

Last November, Baltazar then made his Gilas debut posting an average of 7.0 points and 8.5 rebounds in Gilas’ twin wins over Thailand.

Baldwin has made it known that if he had a chance, he would turn Baltazar into a winger.

“Honestly, the plan is to develop him more as a perimeter player,” he bared in Tiebreaker Times’ Coaches Unfiltered, presented by SMART.

“I think he can become a very good wing, and he will be a real problem for the teams posting up wings and defending on the wing.”

Furthermore, news sources then revealed that Gilas might not be the route of Baltazar.

Reportedly, he also has a standing offer in a pro league in the States.