For his whole career, Marc Pingris has been known to provide his team energy and hustle on the court.
Even with the Philippine national men’s basketball team, the San Mig Coffee forward is expected to provide the team a burst with his defense and rebounding.
So when he played a lethargic game in Gilas Pilipinas’ showdown on Wednesday against a selection of PBA stars, the whole team predictably followed suit.
Gilas team captain Jimmy Alapag spoke to Pingris after the match about the forward’s play.
“Kinausap ako ni Jimmy na nawawala raw yung energy ng team kapag wala yung energy ko,” said Pingris, who stood out as one of the team’s best players in its close match against New Zealand’s Tall Blacks national team.
“Kasi yung last game namin sa New Zealand naipakita ko andun yung depensa ko, yung hustle ko, tumutulong pa ako sa trap, kumukuha ako ng rebound kahit malalaki yung kalaban ko kaya tuwang-tuwa si Jimmy sa akin. Ngayon kinausap niya ako na kulang raw, and kailangan next game ibalik ko yung energy ko.”
Pingris took responsibility for his poor performance, but vowed he would bounce back.
“Disappointed ako sa game ko, pero ‘di naman ako nagpa-panic. Kumbaga pwede ko naman ma-adjust yun sa practice namin bukas and sa game versus Kazakhstan,” said Pingris, who admitted that he’s still making minor adjustments as part of the team.
“Kailangan ko rin malaman sa sarili ko ano ba talaga yung role ko. Right now nasa 80 percent na ako in terms of understanding the plays, pero kung ano siguro ang sinabi ni coach yun na lang gagawin ko.”
Gilas takes on Kazakhstan national team on Friday, giving Pingris one final opportunity to show his wares ahead of the FIBA Asia Championship.
“Kailangan kapag pinasok ako energy na agad. Aminado ako na hindi ko naipakita ngayon.”
Source: Rey Joble, InterAKTV