CALVIN Oftana continued to step up for TNT in the PBA Governors Cup Finals in the absence of top gunner Roger Pogoy.
The sophomore wingman again answered the call for the Tropang Giga as he fired 20 points including 4-of-9 from beyond the arc in helping the team take the lead in the title series for the first time behind a 104-95 win over Barangay Ginebra Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The former NCAA MVP out of San Beda also added eight points and two rebounds as the Game 5 win allowed TNT to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Coach Jojo Lastimosa heaped praises on Oftana later on for perfectly filling in the role left by the injured Pogoy (fractured pinkie).
Jolas on Calvin Oftana
“Calvin, I would not say he’s a revelation, but he’s a breath of fresh air now that Roger isn’t there,” said the TNT mentor.
“He has filled up that role very well.”
Save for him suddenly disappearing in Game Three that led Lastimosa to call him out in the post-game presser, Oftana has been making strides in his first-ever finals appearance in the pro league.
So far in five games in the finals, Oftana is averaging 13.8 points and 6.4 rebounds.
“The hardest thing in this league is to be consistent. And Calvin is trying to be that person who would be consistent,” said Lastimosa.
“And you can’t be up and down on this series and even in your game, so if you have a bad game, dapat hindi gaano masama.”
Oftana is obviously living up on Lastimosa’s expectations.