Lee gets last laugh in amusing first game vs ROS, ex-teammates
As a vital part of Rain or Shine for five years, Paul Lee knew what was coming when he faced his former team for the first time.
Known for their physical brand of basketball, the Elasto Painters, specifically their rugged big man Beau Belga showed their ex-teammate what it’s like to be on the other end of a hard foul.
“Hinihintay ko na nung first quarter,” Lee said.
Lee braced for the worst but it still caught him off guard when he fell down after hitting Belga late in the second frame, saying, “Mali yung tantya ko kasi second quarter na dumating.”
Still, the guard had the last laugh, taking charge in the clutch to lift Star to a 99-91 win on Sunday for its third straight victory.
“Tiwala lang kami sa sistema ni coach, and then yung trust ko sa teammates ko, nandoon talaga since day one. Dumating ako sa team, parang pinakita ko sa kanila na kailangan talaga magtiwala tayo sa isa’t isa para malayo ang marating natin,” he said.
Not even a little trash talk from his ex-teammates like Jericho Cruz could throw Lee off his game, as he finished with 14 points, four assists, and three rebounds against his former team.
“Medyo matagal na ako sa liga na ito kaya di na pwede sa akin yun. Di na ako magpapadala, laro lang tayo. Alam ko kung kailan yung oras para sa ganun,” he said.
And the 2012 Rookie of the Year did, showing maturity as the Hotshots composed themselves in the endgame to pull off the triumph late from this highly emotional affair.
“At the end of the day, kailangan naming manalo. Yun ang pinaka-importante sa amin. Di ko tiningnan yung kailangan ko magpakita o kailangan ko tumira ng marami dahil Rain or Shine ang kalaban,” said Lee.
“Focused lang kami. Kailangan lahat maging masaya sa team. Ginawa ko lang talaga yung part ko. At the end of the day, sa amin pa rin yung huling halakhak.”
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