JAMES Yap just won his sixth PBA championship ring on Thursday night after San Mig bagged the Commissioner’s Cup title with a 3-1 drubbing of Talk 'N Text in the finals, yet his mind was already on a bigger prize - a possible season grand slam.
The newly minted Finals MVP has minced no words about the fact that he wants a grand slam to be the crowning glory of his career - a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, he said. But we dared ask if a ring of another sort is also on his mind at the moment.
Yap was puzzzled for a moment, until the name of his girlfriend, Michela Cazzola, entered the conversation.
“Ahhh… hahaha. Wala pa. Relax,” the San Mig star said. “Basta, relax ka lang dyan. Saka na 'yung ring na 'yun.”
Yap's sixth career championship put him one up on the previous face of the Purefoods franchise, Alvin Patrimonio, who is now San Mig's team manager. A seventh ring in the season-ending Governors Cup will give him something the four-time MVP never came close to winning in his career - a grand slam.
Eight, of course, is considered a lucky number by the Chinese, and Yap admits he, too, believes it. Yap, of course, is eligible to offer a ring to Cazzola, his high-profile marriage with top showbiz personality and presidential sister Kris Aquino having been annulled in 2012.
So is he ready for the proposal?
Cazzola herself was quick to brush off the thought, saying she is never fond of jewelries.
“Wala, hindi ako mahilig sa singsing. I never wear jewelries, oh look,” said Cazzola in her Italian-Filipino accent as she showed off her hands in between laughs. “I am not really used to wearing one.”
But asked about wearing the most precious ring a woman in love can ever wear, Cazzola burst into laughter.
“Ikaw talaga ha. Ay, I won’t answer you on that (laughed),” Cazzola, who first talked about her relationship with Yap in an interview with Spin.ph, giggled in the din of the Mixers’ celebration at mid-court following their victory over the Tropang Texters in the title-clinching Game Four.
“But, sige, wag ka mag-alala. Once there is something I should tell you, you’d be one of the first to know.”