PBA Philippine Cup

Japeth Aguilar ‘extra careful’ in attempt to avoid injury return

Delfin Dioquino
Japeth Aguilar ‘extra careful’ in attempt to avoid injury return

KEY COG. Japeth Aguilar helps tow Ginebra to another thrilling triumph.

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Barangay Ginebra has proven that it is tough to beat whenever Japeth Aguilar is healthy as it gets off a 2-0 start in the PBA Philippine Cup

MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra does not want to risk having Japeth Aguilar get hurt again.

Gin Kings head coach Tim Cone said he is ready to sideline Aguilar if necessary as the star forward takes the necessary precautions to avoid the return of the left calf injury he sustained in the playoffs of the PBA Governors’ Cup last season.

“Obviously, if he starts feeling it, then he is going to have to limit minutes. If he feels it really badly, maybe he has to sit out a few games,” said Cone.

“But that is exactly what we’re trying to prevent, because that is what happened to us in the finals last conference.”

Aguilar sustained the injury in Game 1 of their semifinal clash against NLEX and missed sixth straight matches up until Game 3 of their finals matchup against Meralco, which ended with Ginebra trailing 1-2 in the best-of-seven affair.

His return in Game 4, though, proved to be the difference as the Gin Kings swept the next three matches to capture their fourth Governors’ Cup championship in six years.

Aguilar has also been nothing but magnificent at the start of the Philippine Cup this season, averaging 19 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks to power Ginebra to a 2-0 start.

He hit the go-ahead bucket in their 85-82 comeback win over Blackwater and churned out 23 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 blocks in a 90-85 victory over Rain or Shine on Wednesday, June 15.

“The value is there, obviously. You saw him tonight and you saw the way he dominated the paint defensively with his shot-blocking and intimidation. Aside from the scoring, that is such a huge part of what our team is all about,” Cone said.

Although the nagging pain he felt from the injury during the offseason is now gone, Aguilar said he is being “extra careful” as he tries not to miss significant time off the court anew.

The high-flying Aguilar bared he now stretches and ices his body – practices that he did not follow before suffering the injury.

“We’re not getting any younger. Really got to be disciplined. Off the court, I need to take care of my body and make sure I’m healthy.” – Rappler.com

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.