TnT Tropang Giga was clueless until the morning of Game 5 if the team can have its two key bigs playing against San Miguel in their PBA Philippine Cup semifinals series.
Coach Chot Reyes admitted being uncertain about the status of Poy Erram and Kelly Williams for Wednesday’s series resumption and was not assured of their availability until hours before the game at the Don Honorio Ventura State University gym.
Chot on return of Kelly Williams, Poy Erram
Williams hadn’t played in the best-of-seven series after being placed under the league’s health and safety protocols, while Erram still had a swollen face brought about by the fractured cheek bone he suffered in a Game 4 blowout the last time.
“We didn’t know if he could play until this morning. We had to wait until he passed his antigen test,” said Reyes of the health protocol teams had to undergo on game day.
Kelly Williams rises for a layup over June Mar Fajardo.
“Same with everyone. Poy even after practice couldn’t fully practice yet because he was still figuring out how to use that mask he will wear,” added the TnT mentor about the case of the 6-foot-8 Erram.
Come game time, Williams and Erram were at the Tropang Giga bench, with the 39-year-old Williams even inserted by Reyes as part of his starting unit.
The outcome had the two bigs aiding the team to pull off a 110-90 win for a 3-2 series lead and on the threshold of making it back to the finals of the all-Filipino conference.
Williams, the 2008 MVP, finished with 12 points and three rebounds, while Erram added 10 and six rebounds.
Their effort earned them enough credit from their coach.
“Credit to those two guys. They came out and and gave us huge minutes even in less than ideal circumstances,” said Reyes.
We are now on Quento! Download the app to enjoy more articles and videos from SPIN.ph and other Summit Media websites.