In battle against sly SMB guards, Ravena gives himself a failing grade
NLEX rookie Kiefer Ravena felt that he disappointed in his much anticipated duel against the famed San Miguel backcourt on Friday.
“Maybe, I failed because we lost,” he said on the heels of the Road Warriors’ 98-109 defeat to the Beermen at Cuneta Astrodome. “No matter how good you played, in the end, we still lost.”
Ravena faced the toughest test in his professional career as he was guarded by Mythical Team members Chris Ross and Alex Cabagnot, as well as former Ateneo teammate Von Pessumal in stretches during the tiff.
“They tried to get inside of my head,” he shared. “They were talking smack so I was trying to do the same thing, but as much as possible, I wanted to focus and stick to the game because it seems like I’m losing my focus out of my game.”
The experience also served as an eye-opener for Ravena that there’s still so much that he needs to learn.
“I study them too much and I thought know what they’re going to do. But they’re really good that while talking smack, they’re carrying the load for their team. I can’t be affected about that. That tells me that I still need to focus more on my game to be able to do what they are doing,” he said.
Though he was largely kept in check in his 30 minutes of action, the 24-year-old was still able to muster 15 points, six assists, and three rebounds in the game.
Ravena, though, was man enough to admit that San Miguel was the better team in the match. “They just have too many weapons.”
“We were in there for 40 minutes, but the last eight minutes was really tough for us. We had mental lapses, each one of us. Again, you can’t give a great team so many chances. They will really take advantage of you, they’re gonna pick you apart, and that’s what San Miguel did,” he said.
NLEX has now lost three straight games to fall to 2-3 in the standings and Ravena believes the Road Warriors need to start doing a better job down the stretch.
“We’re always in the game and we know we can complete the job. But sometimes, we just fall apart in the end,” he said. “We can’t be frustrated. But also, we can’t always say that we need to learn from this because this is already our third straight loss. What we need now is to act on it.”
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