HENRY Walker pointed to LA Tenorio as the guy that made the difference in Barangay Ginebra's 98-81 demolition of Blackwater Friday night in the PBA Governors Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The prolific import referred to the veteran guard as ice-cold after seeing Tenorio torch the Elite for 16 second half points that steered the defending champions to the come-from-behind win.
Tenorio was scoreless in the first half which Blackwater controlled, 48-45.
"LA, he's just ice-cold. He doesn't score in buckets the whole half, but he's ice-cold," said Walker after the game.
"It doesn't matter what he does. You just got to be ready for those clutch moments."
Tenorio was clutch in the fourth quarter, when he poured 10 points as the Kings outscored the Elite, 29-10.
His five straight points inside the final three minutes - including a three-pointer - was the knockout punch for Ginebra, 92-80. Blackwater was just within seven points when Tenorio went on a scoring spree.
"They got a guy like that who can take them at the right place, and make the right decision, and control the game," said Walker of the veteran Ginebra playmaker.
Walker finished with 26 points on 6-of-17 shooting from three-point range. He had 19 in the first half, but obviously tired down the stretch as the import played without relief for 48 minutes.
"We went out there and tried to hit them with the knockout punch early. They got up, they hit us back, and we hit them back," he said. "It was a good match until eight minutes left in the fourth quarter. Their championship pedigree just came out."
The Elite fell to 4-5 but still in contention for a quarterfinals berth. Walker said the effort the team showed against a talented team like the Kings will help it in the long run.
"This is growing pains. In order to be good, these are the situations you have to be included," stressed the former NBA veteran.
"We just want to go out there and compete, and see how we measure up against the best team in the PBA.'"