Mo Tautuaa settling into starring role for San Miguel
MANILA, Philippines — San Miguel Beer big man Moala Tautuaa has picked up where he left off seven months since the season was shut down due to the pandemic.
Without their pillar in June Mar Fajardo, the Beermen have turned to Moala Tautuaa, who has fully embraced his starring role as his team’s focal point in the middle.
“Coach has been talking to my ear this whole time. He’s making sure that I assert my dominance,” said Tautuaa after San Miguel’s 105-98 win over TerraFirma on Monday.
“We’re missing June Mar down there, and that’s my position. So I have no other business out there, and I’m just gonna be down here, working as hard as I can to make sure that my team is successful.”
The 6-foot-8 Tautuaa had 20 points and 11 rebounds in the season-opener against Magnolia last March and remained a steady force against the Dyip, dominating the paint en route to a game-high 25 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field.
It was also a big bounce-back game for the 31-year-old Tautuaa, who struggled with only nine points in a blowout loss to TNT last Friday in a game where another key SMB cog in Terrence Romeo dislocated his right shoulder.
Romeo has since left the bubble after being ruled out of the Philippine Cup, making the Beermen’s title defense a more daunting task than it already is.
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