MALCOLM White found out that keeping his emotions in check will keep GlobalPort afloat.
The Batang Pier import adjusted to the physicality of PBA basketball on Friday night in the team’s 86-85 win over Meralco in the Commissioner’s Cup.
Coming off a 128-114 loss to TNT last Sunday when he was called for a technical foul for complaining about excessive physicality and fouled out after just 30 minutes, White stayed focused all-game long against the Bolts, finishing with 25 points on 12-of-18 shooting, 17 rebounds, two blocks, and two assists in 43 minutes.
“The last game, I was called for a tech, it was unnecessary physicality, that's not what the PBA is looking for,” White said. “I think this game I did a better job of keeping my composure and just playing through the physicality.”
“But this team is not as physical as the first team we played,” he added of the Bolts. “Even the big fella [Arinze Onuaku], he's strong but he's not over physical. He's so big, he don't really need... he's so huge, man, he just uses his body to move you and score.”
Onuaku, recovering from a bum stomach, still contributed 21 points and 14 boards in 44 minutes, but White outplayed him even though he didn’t have to bang bodies as much with the hulking Bolts import.
“This game I didn't really have to [be physical],” White said. “The locals didn't really bump me like in the first game. First game was tough man, it was a physical game. So I just really wanted to establish my mid-range shot because [Onuaku] is a big guy, it's hard to back him down, he's not gonna move you know.”
Good thing, Stanley Pringle kept the Batang Pier ahead with his offense down the stretch, but White stressed the Batang Pier still have to work on their game on the other end.
“We need to get better defensively, we need better offensive possessions, cut out the turnovers, and I mean, pretty much that's it,” White said. “Main thing is eliminate the turnovers and do a better job on our defensive assignments, we're not rotating properly.”
“Those things we can work on and once we correct those in practice, we can be a better, stronger team and hopefully we can go to the playoffs,” he added.