Abueva says rookie Perez has long way to go
MANILA, Philippines – CJ Perez has long been said to be cut from the same cloth as Calvin Abueva, but if "The Beast" were to be asked, the top PBA rookie still has a long way to go.
Abueva and Phoenix showed Perez and Columbian how things are done by pulling off a 108-98 triumph for a blistering 3-0 start in the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup on Wednesday, January 23.
After impressing with 26 points in his PBA debut, "The Baby Beast" was limited to 10 points, although he still ended up with an all-around game by scattering 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals.
"About sa amin, pinagma-match mo kami, ang akin kung match lang, malayo pa," said Abueva, who finished with 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals in the win.
(If you're going to compare us in terms of individual matchup, it's still distant.)
But the Fuel Masters veteran was quick to downplay the comparisons, saying the only thing that matters is whose team comes away with the win.
"Ang sa akin naman, I want to win the game, hindi matches lang ang pinag-uusapan," Abueva added.
(For me, I want to win the game. Our individual matchup should not matter.)
"Eto 'yung game na mananalo kayo, hindi 'yung kesyo ganiyan, kesyo ganito, ilang points ka, ilang points ako. Ang bitter naman siguro noon. Ang inaano dito, kung ano 'yung team na mananalo, 'di ba?"
(This is a game that you want to win and not just to compare how many points we each scored. I guess that's a bitter approach to that. What's important is which team won, right?)
Abueva also assured that he has nothing personal against Perez and even game him a few bits of advice.
"Magkalaban kami sa court, pero ang akin lang, sa labas, kapatid ang turing ko sa kaniya, walang personalan sa akin," Abueva said.
(We're opponents on the court, but outside of it, I treat him as a brother. I don't have anything personal against him.)
"Dapat i-force niya pa, i-push niya pa para mas mag-high level pa 'yung galawan niya sa loob. Kasi rookie pa lang eh. Siyempre marami tayong naiisip about sa rookie, pero improve mo muna ang sarili mo sa pro, bago ka mag-high level."
(He should still force and push himself so he can play at a high level. He's just a rookie. We always think about great things for rookies, but he should still improve so he can play at a high level.)
Phoenix seeks to make it 4 wins in a row against Blackwater on February 1 at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City. – Rappler.com