AZ Reid is a man of his word.
The San Miguel Beer import proved true to his promise of leading the Beermen to a PBA championship after the proud franchise swept Alaska with a 91-81 win in Game Four of the Governors’ Cup Finals on Friday night.
Reid made a bold vow to SMB management that he would carry the team to the title after losing its first two games this conference when he was still recovering from food poisoning.
“First I said, 'If we go zero-and-four, send me home,' then I said, ‘I’m going to win you a championship,'” he revealed after the game.
Reid had the confidence to make the promise considering he had a powerhouse squad behind him, led by MVP June Mar Fajardo, Arwind Santos, Alex Cabagnot, and Marcio Lassiter.
“You can’t get me all these weapons and expect for me not to be good,” Reid said. “We are stacked. I have shooters, big men, guards, and defenders. What else can you ask for from this team?”
That’s why Reid, who registered 33 points, six boards, and four assists in the title-clinching game, feels he can relate to the world’s best player today —LeBron James, who also won a title with Miami with a star-studded lineup after transferring from Cleveland.
“I actually feel like LeBron if you think about it,” Reid said with a smile. “I had to go from another team to another team to win it.”
But Reid said he meant no disrespect to his former team, Rain or Shine, where he fell short of winning a title.
“You got to get knocked down before you get to the top,” Reid said. “I’m thankful for (ROS) for giving me the opportunity to be here because without them, this wouldn’t be possible.”
Now, he has silenced his doubters.
“Every time I look at the media and see stuff — ‘He’s a good import, but can he win?’ A lot of people say I can’t win. But man, I’m a champion now,” Reid beamed. “What can you say now? what can’t I do? I can win. I’m a champion.”
“I got what I came here for,” added the two-time Best Import, who won his first title since winning in Germany in 2011.
“But this one weighs much more because there’s so much drama, excitement, fun, and stress in the PBA you go through as an import.
“It could’ve been better if I had won the Best Import, but I got the championship, so that’s all that matters,” he added with a smile.