Egay Macaraya glad to see star Michael Calisaan's hustle, energy rub off on Stags
Stags coach Egay Macaraya barks orders from the sidelines. Dante Peralta

MICHAEL Calisaan appreciated the gesture of San Sebastian coach Egay Macaraya in defending him from the controversial comments made by San Beda coach Boyet Fernandez last week.

Macaraya stood up for Calisaan when Fernandez insinuated that the San Sebastian star is a ‘dirty player’ following the game between the two teams on Friday.

"Para sa akin, malaking bagay 'yun. Hindi na ako natatakot kasi nakasuporta lagi si coach sa akin," said Calisaan, following the 73-61 win over College of Saint Benilde on Thursday.

As he defended his player last weekend, Macaraya said he encouraged his team to play like Calisaan - play hard but not dirty.

"Ang sinabi ko lang, it's not Michael that will change, 'yung whole team maging Michael Calisaan. Kasi ang nangyari, si Michael naging victim. Ang gusto ko magbago sa team na 'yung buong team maging Michael Calisaan. Not si Michael and magbabago.”

"Sa nakikita ko, Michael is just doing his job. Naging hardworker siya and he goes hard all the time. Kung tatawagan man sila, discretion na ng referee 'yun, wala na akong magagawa. But I like the way how he plays," said Macaraya.

So far, Macaraya said he is seeing that attitude slowly rubbing off on his players.

"Sa reaction ngayon, walang nagrereklamo. Tamaan man o hindi, okay lang. Kasama sa basketball 'yun. Every time na naglalaro tayo, hindi naman maiiwasan na binagsakan ng siko si Gayosa, okay lang. He is just focused on the game. Ganun lang," said Macaraya.

Calisaan finished with a double-double as he had 11 points and 11 rebounds, but only had a 3-of-13 shooting from the field.

"Siguro pinag-iingatan ko 'yung laro ko kasi gusto ko makalaro," said Calisaan. 

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