BLACKWATER rookie Art dela Cruz was glad to start his PBA career on a winning note, but admitted it was a 'weird feeling' going up against longtime collegiate teammate Baser Amer in their debut.
The Elite survived a fiery Bolts rally late in the game to hack out a 92-90, victory - the two-year franchise's first both this season and in an all-Filipino conference.
“Masaya kasi panalo kami (and) it’s a good start sa career ko,” said dela Cruz, who ended his collegiate career in San Beda with a bitter loss in the championship series to arch-rival Letran in the NCAA.
Dela Cruz, who played with Amer for six years, including two years in high school, admitted it took a lot of getting used to facing a former teammate like Amer.
“It feels weird na iba suot namin na jersey pero we need to face it,” he said.
The No. 9 pick overall marked his pro debut with two points, two rebounds and one assist in 11 minutes, while Amer had no field goal but registered one rebound and one assists in 14 minutes with Meralco.
But the former Red Lions captain was glad to have contributed to Blackwater in any way that he can.
“Masaya ako na meron kami pareho playing time and I know makakapag-contribute pa kami sa mga teams namin,” he said.