Barangay Ginebra head coach Tim Cone expressed his high expectation from his rookies Arvin Tolentino, Jerrick Balanza and Kent Salado.

The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) made its return last night and it was treat for the fans who waited seven months for its return.

One of the games in the double header of the Sunday action was the match between the Barangay Ginebra and NLEX.

The Kings got the better of the Road Warriors in that game, 102-92.

In a game where Barangay Ginebra’s Japeth Aguilar and LA Tenorio played limited minutes, Cone decided to rely on his rookies for the game.

First year guys Arvin Tolentino and Jerrick Balanza had their first taste of PBA action. Tolentino started the game while Balanza came off the bench for the Kings.

“We expect more from Arvin Tolentino, we expect more from Jerrick Balanza, these guys can step up for us. Kent Salado didn’t play but he will get some time as well. Those rookies of ours, we have a lot of belief in them and we showed that by starting Arvin in the basketball game,” Cone said during the post-game interview.

Tolentino played 17 minutes in the floor and scored five points and grabbed two rebounds. Balanza on the other hand was only given two minutes of playing time and was not able to put up any stats.

Despite the limited minutes, the winningest coach in the league is very high on the rookies they drafted, especially on Tolentino.

“I’m really high on Arvin I think he’ll be an impact player in this league,” he said.

It’s an unusual sight to see Cone utilize his rookies a lot right away as in the past, he has made them earn playing time in practice.

The 62-year-old tactician expressed his joy of starting the season with a W and believes that more improvement is in store for the squad as they move on.

“I’m thankful for that one because that gets us off the right foot and we could hopefully move forward. So far so good, hopefully we could move forward and continue to grow and get better as a team and get in better shape and we still have a lot of room for improvement,” he said.

Barangay Ginebra will be in action once again on Thursday against the Blackwater Bossing.