CHICAGO – Back in 2019, when he was taken as the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, Roosevelt Adams was supposed to be the next big PBA star.

But he had the misfortune of being drafted by Terrafirma, a bottom-feeding team where his game did not grow, it only suffered,

Misused and unhappy, Roosevelt Adams, with the weight of Dyip’s losses crushing his soul, found his salvation in the Japan B.League’s Division 2 where he recently signed a deal to play for the Kagawa Five Arrows.

Before embarking on his next basketball journey, the 6-foot-5, 195-pound wing spoke exclusively to SPIN.ph. Here is Adams, in his own words.

SPIN.PH: What made you ultimately decide to leave the PBA?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: I felt like I was not getting better, playing out of position the entire time. I never was given a role in the PBA, so it was harder to show my true self and expand my game or develop.

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SPIN.PH: I heard that your mother team, Terrafirma, did not even attempt to make you a significant offer. Is this true?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: After the initial discussions, nobody contacted me.

SPIN.PH: Did any of the super teams from SMC or the MVP group attempt to acquire your services?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: I heard about the Magnolia rumor when I came back for Gilas but I wasn’t approached about it.

SPIN.PH: How was that experience like,playing for Gilas in the last window? And would you like to play in the World Cup?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: Playing for Gilas was a great experience. Played with some great players and awesome coaches.

I appreciate SBP boss Al Panlilio and coach Chot Reyes for giving me a chance in the pool and giving me a shot at trying out for the Gilas team.

I learned a lot from just that two-week stint. If given the opportunity I’d love to play in the World Cup.

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SPIN.PH: Have you been to Japan before? Do you know anything about the language and the culture?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: I lived in Japan for five years because my pops was in the military.

SPIN.PH: Did you get the same perks as the other Asian imports from the Philippines now playing in the B.League – a free apartment, a free use of a car, and free dining at restaurants that sponsor your team?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: Yes.

SPIN.PH: What can you share about the value of your contract. I’m told it’s well over $20,000 a month, can you confirm that?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: AlI can say is that my salary is over the PBA max.

SPIN.PH: If you decide to return to the PBA, whenever that is, will Terrafirma still own your rights.”

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: Yes, Terrafirma would.

SPIN.PH: What did you learn from your short tenure in the PBA?

ROOSEVELT ADAMS: I was disappointed in my PBA experience. I was excited to come into the PBA as a No. 1 pick. However, Terrafirma did not have a plan for me .

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They were playing me out of position. I truly was not not improving or enjoying my basketball.

Once the opportunity to play in the B.League came, I was ready for a professional experience.

PARTING SHOT. Adams is not only a legit scoring threat, he is clearly a straight shooter, too.

Instead of constantly harping about overseas leagues “poaching” their players, the PBA needs to clean up its ranks and make sure that teams like Terrafirma and Blackwater won’t be allowed to just trade or give away the top picks that they’ve harvested as a result of their futility in the standings.

Look, a source told me that Terrafirma was only willing to pay Adams P180,000 a month.

Given that Adams was a No. 1 pick, healthy and ready to ball, P180k is not an offer. It’s an insult.

So glad to see that Roosevelt Adams left.

And got paid.

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