James Yap inches closer to joining 10,000-point club, but insists milestone not a priority
RoS star James Yap is 71 points away from joining the 10,000-point club. Jaime Campos

JAMES Yap may have been off the mark from long range, but still scored enough from short distance and from the foul line to reach a milestone on Friday night.

The Rain or Shine gunner missed all his seven three-point attempts, but still scored 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting from inside the arc and 3-of-4 from the charity stripe to move to 14th on the all-time scoring list.

The two-time MVP increased his point total to 9,929, surpassing Freddie Hubalde by two points and pulling just 71 away from becoming the 14th member of the elite 10,000-points club.

Yap played down his latest feat , saying his focus was more on helping the Elasto Painters grab their fifth win in nine games with a come-from-behind 118-112 win over Ginebra.

“Actually, di ko talaga iniisip, basta laro lang ako,” Yap insisted. “Kasi the more na iisipin mo, the more na ‘di ka makaka-shoot dahil hinahabol mo yung points eh, di ba?”

“Basta goal ko ngayon is yung manalo yung team, bahala na kung ilan ang score ko,” he added.

[See Rain or Shine cools down Ginebra]

When he does reach the great achievement, that’s the time the 35-year-old Yap can relish it.

“Syempre blessed and thankful na naabot ko yun, di ba?” Yap said. “Kung baga, dala-dala mo na yun, nakatatak na yun sayo at nakatatak ka na sa larangan ng PBA. Syempre di ko maaabot to kung wala yung mga sumusuporta na mga fans so syempre para sa kanila yun – pag naabot ko 'yun.”

Yap, who also contributed four boards and two assists in 26 minutes as a starter on Friday, kept his focus on the task at hand – helping the E-Painters reach the playoffs.

“Sana madala namin ‘to for our next two games,” Yap said. “Ang feeling kasi namin parang ang hirap manalo ngayon, buti na lang kasi masyadong mababa kumpiyansa namin lahat dahil ilang games na puro talo. And nag-usap-usap kami, at least buti na lang maganda ang kinalabasan at sana tuloy-tuloy na.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos