Held to series low in points, Standhardinger wins it on defense for San Miguel
MANILA, Philippines–Christian Standhardinger put all the hurt on TNT when it mattered, clamping down on import Terrence Jones to help pave the way for the Beermen—most especially Chris McCullough—in their 99-94 win in Game 5 of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals.
“I just try to do my best to help this team win,” the Filipino-German, who was the top pick two drafts ago, told reporters shortly after San Miguel pulled ahead 3-2 edge in the best-of-seven at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“We were right on the line of losing it but we kept on fighting. That’s what what we stand for—to keep on fighting,” he added.
Standhardinger has been making contributions off the bench but made sure he brought more than scoring as the vaunted Beermen moved closer to a title in the series that could wrap up on Friday night again at the Big Dome.
But his minutes don’t concern the versatile forward one bit.
“I think every player cares about his minutes, but that doesn’t change the fact that the team comes first,” Standhardinger said.
He finished with just four points—his lowest in the duel, but his presence was felt the most in the final seven minutes of the affair, where held Jones to just three points, all of which coming from the free-throw line.
Mark Dickel, TNT’s other shot-caller, said the San Miguel forward simply caught their prized import depleted, but eventually gave credit where it’s due.
“Standhardinger hardly plays, hardly been a factor in the whole series,” KaTropa’s active consultant said.
“He’s got a lot of energy sitting down the rest of the games, so he came in and did a good job. He was active on Terrence,” he added.
For his part, Standhardinger said he was just simply looking for other ways to contribute.
“Coach puts me in and I try to give it my best,” he said.
“[Tonight], it wasn’t about scoring because we have many great scorers—it’s about playing defense and I tried my best to do just that.”