DONDON Hontiveros rued his hesitation to take matters into his own hands in Alaska’s last offensive play against Meralco on Sunday in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Aces lost by a hairline, 87-88, but they had a golden opportunity for a great escape when Hontiveros found himself wide open after taking a pass from import Henry Walker and faking off Gary David on the left side.
Instead, the veteran shooting guard decided to go for a drive only to see a double-teaming defense, forcing him to make a late pass to Walker, who simply had no time to take a decent shot at a game winner.
“That would’ve been the ideal play — one dribble tapos pull-up dapat, pero I messed up,” Hontiveros said after the game.
“Tapos I was also thinking of going hard kasi penalty din (ang Meralco) eh. Nakita ko na nag-collapse yung defense, ang sama pa ng pasa ko, so very frustrating.”
The Cebuano hotshot said the botched final play brought back memories of games where he missed free throws to win the game for Alaska - right on his 37th birthday.
“Parang naalala ko yung missed free throws ko (in past games) where we had a chance of winning,” he said.
He missed the chance to make it a truly happy birthday on his part, but he's taking the letdown in stride.
“I had a chance of making this a happy birthday para sa akin," he said. "Sayang.”