ALTHOUGH aware he has let his teammates down, Jeff Chan believes his current shooting struggle has something to do with fatigue.
“Hindi ko din alam kung bakit? Ayaw pumasok ng mga shots ko. Siguro fatigue na rin,” said the Rain or Shine gunner, who had been playing basketball with little rest since last year’s Jones Cup in Chinese-Taipei all the way to the Fiba-Asia Men’s Championship.
“Nahihiya na rin talaga ako kay coach pati sa mga teammates ko at fans.”
Chan’s scoring average in the PBA Governors Cup is the lowest he had with the Elasto Painters in the last two years. The former Far Eastern University stalwart is averaging just 7.80 points, 3 rebounds, and 3.30 assists in the season-ending tournament, a far cry from his 14.25-point clip last season.
“Tina-try ko naman. Ayaw lang talaga. Pero last game, maganda-ganda naman. Kaya try ko i-relive `yung kumpiyansa ko roon next game,” he said.
At the same time, the soft-spoken Bacolod City-born sniper bared how he intends to change his style come Game Two of the Elasto Painters’ semifinals series against Petron on Wednesday night.
“Hindi na muna siguro ako masyado mag-focus sa three points. Mid-range at layup muna para bumalik kumpiyansa,” said Chan, who was 1-of-7 from three point range in Rain or Shine’s 83-91 loss to the Boosters in Game One.
Asked why he is icing both his hands after Rain or Shine’s morning practice on Tuesday at the Reyes Gym in Mandaluyong, Chan declared it’s part of his ‘pahiyang.’
“Pinapalamig ko na lang muna. Ayaw mag-init eh. Sana maging effective ito. Ginagawa ko rin kasi ito nung high school pa ko,” said the 30-year-old shooter.
Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao admitted Rain or Shine can never win the bets-of-five series against Petron if Chan continues his slump.
“Hindi namin kaya manalo sa Petron kung hindi puputok si Jeff. Malabo yun,” said Guiao while shaking his head.
“I think Jeff made 16 points in Game One, pero hindi sapat yun. He needs to get back his deadly shooting particularly his three-point shots,” said the fiery mentor of his deadly gunner who has made only eight of his 44 three-point attempts this conference.
Asked if he’ll finally regain his shooting touch, Chan replied: “Susubukan ko nang pumutok ulit next game!”
“Andyan naman 'yung kumpiyansa ko at kumpiyansa ni coach Yeng sa akin. Nagpapasalamat ako kasi hindi siya nawawalan ng tiwala sa akin. Kaya sana lumabas na sa Game Two,” he said.
“Mahirap mabaon ng 0-2.”