KIEFER Ravena admitted he was motivated to bring his best against Paul Lee in their individual matchup in NLEX’s 105-94 loss to Magnolia in the PBA Philippine Cup on Sunday night.
Ravena played his best offensive game of his pro career, pumping in 31 points on 12-of-20 shooting, on top of five assists, four rebounds, and four steals, without committing a single turnover in over 32 minutes of play.
The rookie sensation out of Ateneo said it’s the first meeting between the two premier playmakers since the Filoil Flying V preseason in 2010 when Ravena was part of the guest PH 18-Under team and Lee was the star of the University of the East squad.
With Ravena coming in prepared for their second faceoff, Lee returned the favor as he scattered 21 points, four assists, three boards, and one steal in just 24 minutes, and more importantly came away with the win.
“You know he has one on me in the pro ranks, so hopefully, I get to see him again,” Ravena said. “You know he’s one of the best point guards in the league. Parang pag nakakalaban mo yung ganoong player, kailangan mong ilabas yung ano mo, yung A-Game mo kasi respeto mo yun sa kanya.
“Pag nilalabas mo yung respeto mo sa isang player, ilalabas niya din yung best niya sa 'yo,” he added. “So ganon yung nangyari kanina. They ended up with the win but I wanted to see where I can battle against the premier point guards in the league.”
Ravena may have held his own against Lee, but failed to lead his team to a win as the Road Warriors lost their second straight game after starting the conference with two wins.
“Down the drain,” Ravena said. “But yeah, we have to wake up. We have to fight for survival. Grabe yung dikdikan ng standings ngayon eh. Lahat talaga naghahabol sa panalo.”
“We have to triple our effort,” the former King Eagle added. “Yung double effort, di na gumana eh. So triple pa. Nineteen rebounds, minus 19 kami sa rebounds? That’s too much. That can’t happen again.”