ANTIPOLO – Rain or Shine coach Caloy Garcia looked like a genius with his player rotations in Rain or Shine’s 98-97 win over NLEX in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Wednesday night.
Garcia knew when to call on Jay Washington, who turned out to the be the E-Painters’ 'magic hugot' after coming off the bench in the final period, scoring all of his 10 points in that limited stretch.
Garcia also made mention of rookie Sydney Onwubere, who contributed a three-pointer and one rebound in just seven minutes of play.
“The nice thing is I just told the players at halftime, yung mga hindi ko nagagamit, na just to be ready, because may diskarte akong gagawin,” Garcia admitted. “Sydney and Jay-Wash came out and they gave us energy, and Jay-Wash hit big shots.”
None was bigger than Washington’s three-pointer from the left corner that gave the E-Painters a 97-95 lead, enough to cushion Arnett Moultrie’s putback reverse layup, and setting the stage for Reggie Johnson’s go-ahead free throw.
Aside from his 10 points, the veteran forward finished with three rebounds and one steal without a turnover in less than nine minutes of play.
“I told them na baka iniisip nila na pag hindi ginagamit to expect not to play, but at the end of the day, siya pa ata naging best player,” Garcia said of Washington.