ON the night he became the all-time leader in career three-pointers made in PBA history, Meralco star Jimmy Alapag badly wanted the ball in his hands and go for the game-tying trey in a bid to send Game Two of the Governors Cup Finals into overtime.
But Barangay Ginebra’s defense just wouldn't let him.
With most of the Kings swarming on him, the 38-year-old point guard never had a chance and watched Cliff Hodge and import Allen Durham miss one trey after the other in the endgame as Ginebra pulled off an 82-79 win that tied the best-of-seven series at one-game apiece.
“Yeah, absolutely. I was doing my best to get the ball,” said Alapag, whose 1,243rd career three-pointer at the 4:49 mark of the second quarter officially broke the long-standing 17-year record held by Allan Caidic for the most numbers made in the league.
“But you have to give credit to Ginebra defensively, they were solid the whole game.”
Alapag, who finished with only three points but had six assists in 21 minutes of play, said coach Norman Black’s option had the ball going either to him, Durham, or veteran Reynel Hugnatan in the final 13.4 seconds and the Bolts trailing, 82-79.
The former league MVP though, doesn’t mind if he failed to make any attempt with the outcome of the game on the line.
“Again defensively we have to take what they give you. AD got an open look, scramble. Cliff got a decent look and it just didn’t fall,” said Alapag. “That’s the way it is sometimes. You get opportunities and whether you convert or not could be the difference.”
Asked about surpassing a great player like him in Caidic in one of the most significant league records of all-time, Alapag said it’s truly an honor to have achieved a milestone in his 13-year career.
Then again, it would have been better had the Bolts won this one.
“We’ll gonna take and see how we can be better,” he said. “All of our focus is on Wednesday (for Game Three).”