IT wasn’t only LA Tenorio and Terrence Romeo who were involved in a scuffle in Ginebra’s 96-85 win over GlobalPort in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinal matchup on Tuesday night.
Japeth Aguilar also sustained a hit on the shoulder from Sean Anthony in the third quarter, leaving the Gin Kings star slotman groggy on the floor.
Aguilar, though, didn’t take it personally against the Batang Pier energizer bunny.
“Okay lang,” the 6-foot-9 beanpole insisted. “Di ko rin in-expect kung bakit ginawa ni (Sean) yun, pero okay lang.”
Aguilar quickly shrugged off the injury scare as he came back in the next possession and threw down a two-handed slam that was one of his highlights of his 21-point performance.
But it was his interior defense that earned praise from coach Tim Cone.
“Nung first half kasi medyo hesitant ako, nung second half sinabi ko sa sarili ko walang mangyayari kung maghe-hesitate ako so talagang pag may nagda-drive sa basket, talagang nagco-commit na ako,” Aguilar, who collected eight caroms and two blocks, said. “Confident naman ako na tutulungan ako.”
As if the Gin Kings’ defense isn't scary enough with the high-leaping Aguilar manning the middle, what more when Greg Slaughter, who was activated for the first time in nine months, gets back in action.
Aguilar is understandably excited to reconnect with his Twin Tower partner.
“I’m really excited him to play pero no pressure,” Aguilar said. “I want him to take his time, mahirap rin sa kanya, like what happened last time parang na-throw siya sa fire kaagad. Gusto ko sana unti untiin niya, maganda sana sa offseason niya makuha yung rhythm niya, sa mga tune-up games.
“I think plinaplanuhan naman yan ni coach Tim,” he added. “Nae-excite ako na makita siya sa bench kasi alam ko he's a big help for us.”