Jonathon Simmons says PBA style of play ‘a lot better than what I expected’
MANILA, Philipines–Jonathon Simmons lived up to his lofty billing, leading the NLEX Road Warriors’ opening bid in the PBA Governors’ Cup on Wednesday.
Simmons, an NBA veteran best known for his stint with the San Antonio Spurs, delivered 32 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists in a performance that hardly got in the way of Kevin Alas’ equally all-around showing.
Alas, for his part, finished with 31 points, eight rebounds, and four assists, his presence most felt in a fourth-quarter pull away that sealed NLEX’s 124-104 win over Blackwater.
“It’s competitive. Guys [are] physical. I just look at it from a competitive standpoint. Guys wanted to win, and it’s a lot better than what I expected,” Simmons said of the PBA’s style of play.
The American forward also tipped his hat to Alas, NLEX’s crafty guard and skipper.
“I’m just started knowing these guys. Kevin can really play and I was able to see that tonight, so he’s gonna be a big help for us going forward,” he said.
Simmons was actually flagged uncertain for the Road Warriors after reportedly netting a lucrative deal with a pro club in China.
But the American was eventually given the clearance just hours before the contest at the Big Dome.
Asked about his future with the Road Warriors, Simmons was unable to provide anything definitive.
“I don’t know man, I leave that stuff up to management. I just came to play basketball, but I’m glad it worked out so I can play and lead this team to the win,” he said.
If it’s any indication, Simmons sounded invested in his future with NLEX, even reaching for pointers the Road Warriors could use as they forge ahead this conference.
“We just need to do better on defense. I think our defense is going help our offense’s momentum going forward so mostly learning each other’s spots and getting more chemistry on the defensive end and then it’s gonna be hard to beat us,” he said.
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