JARED Dillinger had his turn to take advantage of the attention Arinze Onuaku has been getting as he caught fire for Meralco in its come-from-behind 92-87 win over Alaska in Game Two of their PBA Commissioner’s Cup semifinal series on Wednesday night.
The veteran wingman they call “Daredevil” sparked the comeback by knocking down a conference-high five triples as he repaid the faith of Onuaku, who selflessly kicked the ball out whenever double- or triple-teamed.
“We just got to be ready to shoot,” Dillinger said. “We can’t get too hesitant out there because Arinze’s drawing so much of the defense.”
Dillinger fired 13 of his 20 points in the final frame, including back-to-back three-pointers that gave the Bolts an 88-84 cushion that completed an 18-point turnaround.
“They’re double-, triple-teaming Arinze, and it’s just going to come down to us hitting shots,” he said.
“(But) we don’t have to shoot a three every time,” the 6-foot-5 point forward said. “We got to mix it up a little bit, just know that when they start doubling Arinze, we need to be ready to shoot.”
With their first semifinal win in three years, Dillinger believes have made a statement to the rest of the league they’re not happy just to make the Final Four.
“We knew the importance of this game,” the Filipino-American cager said. “It helped our team grow a little bit.”
“We have a lot of guys who haven’t been here yet, who haven’t experienced what playoff basketball is like out here, so coming back from a deficit and getting a win is great and it helps our younger guys get playoff experience,” he added.