Marcus Douthit’s accidental collision with Qatar forward Abdi Khalid Suliman drew a collective gasp among the thousands of Filipino fans that came in droves to support Gilas Pilipinas in its huge 80-70 victory over a fighting Qatar side Tuesday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Douthit, though, insisted sitting out is not an option if the choice is down to him.
The 6-10 naturalized Filipino, who had another big game against the Qataris with 19 points, 11 rebounds and four assists, said his right calf was hurting for the rest of the game but plans to suit up in the against Hong Kong on Wednesday unless ordered not to.
“During the game, I couldn’t put too much pressure on the foot because it’s still hurting,” Douthit told Spin.ph after the game, as he pointed to his right calf.
“Hopefully, with a day of rest, I’ll be okay. I got to play when I got to play,” he added.
But should Gilas national coach Chot Reyes opt to rest him in the match against winless Hong Kong on Wednesday, Douthit said he won’t have any problem with it.
“That’s his (Reyes) job. My job is to play, but again, it (injury) just happens. I got hit,” said the 33-year-old product of Providence College.
Meantime, Reyes said they’ll have Douthit’s right calf examined on Wednesday morning to see the extent of the injury.
“He’s gonna get a check-up tomorrow, so we don’t know (of Douthit’s condition). I hope it’s just a bruise,” said Reyes after the game.
Reyes said he was forced to send Douthit back into the game with two-and-a-half minutes into the fourth period after Qatar slashed a once imposing 23-point lead to just 53-66.
While Douthit managed to contribute a a free throw and another tip in, it was obvious at that point that Gilas Pilipinas’ best big man was already in pain as he limped up and down the court.
“I didn’t want to bring him (Douthit) back in anymore, but Qatar made a run. We had to get him back in the ball game. So that’s part of it, injuries are part of tournament,” he added.
The Gilas mentor said the coaching staff will first wait for the medical result to see if Douthit will need to rest his right calf or not against winless Hong Kong.