STRUGGLING offensively for most of the night, Kevin Alas still found ways to help NLEX – sacrificing his shots to focus on stopping Paul Lee in the Road Warriors’ narrow 88-87 win over the Magnolia Hotshots on Saturday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Averaging 17.5 points per game in the quarterfinals against Alaska, the former Letran star cooled off as he finished with just five points on 1-9 shooting from the field.
But he made sure to make up for that paltry shooting as he did a good job containing Lee in the endgame, denying the brilliant two-guard open looks at crunch time.
“I was struggling offensively pero siguro kugn saan akong aspect ng game makakatulong, dito defensively so sinabi ko ako na kukuha kay Paul. But it’s just one game though, we have to be consistent,” said Alas who added that he was just merely the one who finished off the defensive scheme on Lee.
“Yun kasi coming into this game, we know we’re facing Magnolia and Paul Lee’s leading the charge for his team, but it’s a total team effort naman e parang we took turns against Paul, siguro natapat lang sakin na endgame ako ang dumepensa sa kanya,” he added.
Containing a pure scorer like Lee is never easy and for Alas, it’s all about keeping up with Lee’s energy and exerting more effort to keep up with the former UE star.
“Ang hirap, Paul Lee is a complete player. We takes advantage kung ano yung binibigay sa kanya ng defense. Siguro it’s a matter of more effort lang pag dating sa kanya, “Alas said.
“Pinapanood namin yung tape niya, bigay mo sa kanya niya yung ganito, he knows how to take advantage, bigay mo sa kanya yung iba, he knows how to take advantage so it’s all about exerting extra effort against Paul,” he added.
While Alas is entirely known for his ability to put the ball in the hoop, he said that he won’t be having any problems sacrificing his offense if it meant limiting Lee in the upcoming games.
“Walang problema sakin yun. Ang main goal is to win the series. Siguro makatulong man sa offense or sa defense, wala sa akin yun, basta we win this series that’s the most important thing.”