IT'S the finals again and Joe Devance is expected to play through the pain once more.
The veteran Fil-Am said he's ready to suit up for Barangay Ginebra in its PBA Governors Cup title series against Meralco notwithstanding a hip injury he suffered during the team's semifinals series against TnT Katropa.
Devance played for just a few minutes in the Kings' series-clinching victory, 115-105, against the Texters during Game Four owing to his injured hip.
Coach Tim Cone later expressed concern about Devance health going to the best-of-seven title series starting on Friday in Lucena.
"I'll be okay. It's nothing serious. I just kind of tweek my hip," said Devance during the press conference for the finals Tuesday at the Sambokojin restaurant in Eastwood. "But I'm not going to make an issue out of it."
Devance played with pain on his foot during the finals of this same tournament last year, but nonetheless managed to go through the entire title series and helped the Kings defeat the Bolts in six games to win their first championship in eight years.
The 35-year-old forward had to get a shot on his injured every game during the championship series against the Bolts.
He still does until this day as Devance had to put off surgery on the injured foot after the season.
But this time though, he has to make do with his hurting hip.
"I think I got it a game before Game 4," he admitted.
"But I'll be good. As I've said, I'm not going to make an issue out of it," Devance said.