JUST a few seconds after Leo Austria gave in to fans' request and inserted him a little less than two minutes left in the game, Gary David repaid his coach’s faith and scored on a reverse layup.
Not bad for someone who recently thought about retiring in the near future.
The San Miguel Beer recruit admitted he had been preparing himself for a post-PBA life after finding no takers for almost a month following his bitter parting of ways with Meralco.
“Ang sinet ko sa mind ko, baka tapos na yung carrer ko,” David said after his debut on Sunday night. “Para kung sakaling walang kumuha na team, di ako masyadong madi-disappoint.”
That was until he got the call from an SMB side that’s being built for a dynastic rule in the league.
“Nung tumawag ang SMB, talagang ginanahan ako dahil San Miguel yan eh, every player pinapangarap makalaro sa San Miguel group, lalo na sa San Miguel,” David said. “Napakasaya ko.”
Joining the Beermen was already a blessing; Playing right in his first game was a huge bonus.
“Expected ko naman na ‘di ako masyadong makakapaglaro,” the 37-year-old cager said. “Thankful lang ako kay coach Leo (Austria) na binigay nya sa akin ito. At least, pagpasok ko, naka-contribute ako kaagad. Basta ang sabi ko lang kung gagamitin ako, ready lang dahil kahapon lang ako nakasama sa scrimmage.”
Chemistry was hardly an issue as David had a handful of former teammates whom he has been reunited with.
“Nung tinawagan ako, ‘di ako masyadong nag-worry dahil nandito naman yung former teammates ko,” the 12-year veteran said. “Nakasama ko naman sila ng maayos kaya di ako nag-worry nung napunta ako sa San Miguel.”
David showed his chemistry with his former teammates as he immediately scored in a set play after he came in at the one-minute, 46 second mark following SMB fan’s chants of “Gary! Gary!”
“Kinilabutan ako dahil naalala ko yung Gilas na sinisigaw ang pangalan ko ng fans,” the former national team gunner said. “Thankful ako sa pagtanggap nila sa akin kaya tingin ko yung adjustments ko, mapapadali talaga.”