MERALCO forward Cliff Hodge is no more than 6-foot-4, but he's averaging an impressive 17 rebounds through two games this season.
Give 'Mr. 100 Percent' part of the credit.
Coming off a 26-point, 18-rebound performance in an 83-75 overtime win over Blackwater, the Fil-American forward said tips from his new coach at Meralco, Norman Black, have made him a much better rebounder this season.
“I was talking to coach Norman. He‘s been giving me little pointers here and there because I got the athletic ability,” Hodge said after the Bolts' second win in as many games in the PBA Philippine Cup.
“He was telling me how he used to get 18 rebounds all conference, so I said, 'Okay, let me ask him what he used to do.' He gave me a couple of pointers, and since then, I’ve been doing it and it’s easier to get the rebounds from the information he gives.”
Although John Wilson saved the day for Meralco after scoring nine of the team’s 11 points in the extra period, Hodge’s three crucial offensive rebounds helped preserve the eight-point win for the Bolts.
In all, the former Reedley College standout came down with eight offensive rebounds against the Elite’s big frontline of JP Erram and Jason Ballesteros, who both stand 6-7.