GLEN Rice Jr. paid tribute to his legendary father in a rather funny way.
After exploding for 34 points in TnT Katropa’s gut-wrenching 118-114 win over Rain or Shine to advance in the PBA Governors Cup semifinals, Rice complimented his elder, Glen Rice for passing on to him his great shooting stroke of which he became known for during playing days, both in the NCAA and the NBA.
Noting how far his range has been after knocking down three from downtown – including a pressure-packed one as the final two minutes was coming - in the Katropa’s do-or-die encounter with the Elasto Painters Friday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, the TnT import mentioned about chanting the name of his father.
“I called on the late Glen Rice Sr. and he just gave me his power,” he jokingly told reporters during the post-game interview where he joined TnT coach Nash Racela.
But joking aside, Rice said the support of his teammates had been an added boost to his confidence as he finished 10 of 20 from the field aside from finishing just one assist short of a triple double after adding 16 rebounds and nine assists to his name.
“Credit to my teammates, they always tell me to keep on shooting,” he said. “When your teammates got your back, it make things a lot easier.”
Rice also scored the basket that put the Katropa on top for good, 116-114, when he scored on a putback with 10 seconds left following an obvious airball from three-point range by Jason Castro. The import though, insisted it was a perfect feed Castro had on him underneath the basket.
“It was a good pass, I guess,” he said. “I just happened to be open and he found me.”
The win ensured TnT a third straight stint in the semifinals this season as it faces defending champion Barangay Ginebra in the best-of-five series that starts Monday.
Just like the team’s quarterfinal match-up with the seventh-seeded Elasto Painters, Rice sees a tough series against the Kings.
“It’s going to be a grind-out series,” said the 26-year-old former NBA player.