JIMMY Alapag admitted it was not the return he had hoped for, but remained excited of what’s ahead for Meralco in the PBA.
The veteran playmaker suited up in his first game back from retirement, but the Bolts lost to San Miguel Beer, 101-85, in their Philippine Cup debut on Wednesday night.
“Not good because we lost. But I felt good,” Alapag said. “I think we let the game get away from us in the fourth quarter, but aside from that, I thought we played pretty well majority of the game.”
“But at the same time, there’s still a lot of room for improvement,” he added.
Alapag felt weird wearing a different shade of blue than the one he had been used to wearing at Talk ‘N Text, where he had spent his entire career before announcing his retirement last season.
“Not as good as I thought it would be,” the former Tropang Texters star said with a smile. “Maybe because it was a (different shade of) blue and not a regular blue and yellow.”
“I’m thankful to still be a part of this league and to be in a position to mentor some of these younger guys,” the former MVP was quick to add.
Alapag showed he still has it after scattering six points on 2-of-8 shooting, eight assists, two boards, and one steal against three turnovers in 32 minutes.
His assists total has allowed him to move just three shy of becoming No. 6 in all-time assists list, ahead of Ronnie Magsanoc, incidentally a Bolts assistant coach who has 3,222 assists.
“I’d feel a little better about it if we had won tonight,” Alapag said of nearing the feat. “But just to be mentioned with one of the great point guards of this league in coach Ronnie is a huge honor.”
“But my whole focus is to try to help this team get wins and we fell a little bit short tonight,” he was quick to add.
“We got great pieces, but any time you join a new team, there’s always a feeling-out process a little bit.”