Behind scorching scoring, Hotshot Lee cops Player of Week award
The swagger in Paul Lee is back, and the former Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Rookie of the Year had that in full display on Sunday when the stakes were high between two title contending teams.
The Tondo-born guard erupted for 18 big points in the fourth quarter in spearheading Magnolia’s huge 100-90 Philippine Cup win over San Miguel Beer that gave the Hotshots a crack at clinching the remaining twice-to-beat advantage for the first round of the playoffs.
In all, the 32-year-old Lee torched the Beermen for 32 points, spiked by a 3-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc, four rebounds and five assists to help his team end its elimination round campaign on a high note after winning back-to-back games at the Don Honorio Ventura State University gym.
“I just worked hard to get my old form back,” said Lee, who struggled earlier in the conference with a slight hamstring injury. “That was a roller-coaster period for me with the injury.”
Magnolia finished the eliminations with an 8-3 record, currently in solo third place, but still in good position to notch the no. 2 seeding entering the quarterfinals.
The output is the fifth career 30-point game of Lee as per PBA chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III, while the 18 points in the fourth period is the most scored in a quarter by a player this season.
Lee answering the call for Magnolia earned him the nod as the Cignal-Play PBA Press Corps Player of the Week for the period of Sept. 15 to 19.
Lee edged TNT’s Mikey Williams in voting by the men and women covering the PBA beat.