Ravena says staredown not intended to shame Pessumal
Getting into a skirmish with Von Pessumal had never crossed Kiefer Ravena’s mind ahead NLEX’s meeting against San Miguel on Friday.
To everyone’s surprise, things got a little rough between the former longtime teammates in the highly-physical match that ended in the Beermen’s favor, 109-98.
Ravena was on the receiving end of a shove from Pessumal at the 9:50 mark of the fourth quarter. The former ended on the floor while the latter received a flagrant foul penalty one.
READ: Pessumal on Ravena shove: I’m not here to make friends
This was after Ravena blocked Pessumal’s fastbreak attempt and capped it off with a staredown.
“I did not expect that at all,” said the second overall pick. “If you watched the game, when that fastbreak happened, which was the same exact possession that I challenged him, I looked at him. After that, everything happened there. But I never instigated something to provoke Von to do that.”
Ravena said he didn’t mean any harm with staredown on Pessumal, saying it was just done in the “heat of the moment.”
“It’s just two players wanting to battle it out and help their team win. And probably that started all the commotions during the end game,” he said.
READ: SMB stays unscathed, escapes NLEX
The scuffle kicked up the tension between two teams a notch which led to the ejections of NLEX big man Michael Miranda and San Miguel guard Chris Ross in the last five minutes of the game.
“With that, the team got fired up and it worked for them. Even though it was a flagrant foul called on Von, it worked for them. Everybody got fired up and that’s when they made their run,” said Ravena moments after the Road Warriors to succumbed to their third straight defeat.
Despite the emotional ending, the 24-year-old playmaker hopes that Pessumal would hold no grudge on him.
“Von and I go way back. Things like this, hopefully, don’t become too personal. I have no intention to shame or hurt anyone, especially him. Win or lose, I have to take it in stride,” he said.
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