Gary David says match-up with longtime rival James Yap lit a fire in his belly
Gary David led Mahindra back into the game with his fourth-quarter explosion. Jerome Ascano

GARY David served up a reminder of what he can do when on target on Sunday, scoring all of his 13 points in the fourth quarter and almost singlehandedly bringing Mahindra back into a game against Rain or Shine.

Although Mahindra failed to complete the comeback in overtime and dropped a 95-99 loss, the four-time PBA scoring champion was proud to prove he can still be a game changer despite his advanced age of 38.

"Sinabihan naman niya (coach Chris Gavina) ako bago mag-start yung game (na mag-ready ako)," said the former Gilas Pilipinas mainstay. "Ang sinabi ko, ready ako since birth."

While he's a bit disappointed that his fourth quarter scoring barrage went for naught, David still remained generally positive to see Mahindra prove that it is a force to be reckoned with in the league.

Inexperience simply did the Flood Buster in come crunch time, David added.

"Sayang, huli na. May chance na manalo pero experience talaga nung team medyo kulang pa, tapos si James (White) bata pa, yung experience niya hindi pa ganun," the former Lyceum star said.

"Pero stay positive pa rin kami. Maganda pa rin naman yung laro ng team. Kumbaga, talagang nakipaglaban kami. 'Yung Rain or Shine, hindi naman basta bastang team."

[See RoS withstands late David explosion to turn back Mahindra in OT]

David faced an old foe in James Yap in the final quarter and he admitted that the match-up lit a fire in his belly. David scored all of his points, including three three-pointers, against his longtime rival and batchmate.

"Si James din galing siya sa opera sa tuhod niya, galing din ako. Parehas pa kami ng batch sa drafting. Kumbaga, alam na namin, kilala din namin yung isa't isa kung paano magbantayan," he said. 

"Siyempre parehas kaming galing sa injury. alangan naman maiwan niya ako. Dagdag din sa akin 'yun na si James Yap binabantayan ko," he added. 

And if there's one thing that David would change if given the chance, it's the last possession in regulation where import James White took a long jumper with the score tied and the clock winding down to its last second.

David was left watching from the bench as their import missed a long jumper.

That would have been a perfect way to announce his return to form. 

"Kung andun ako sa loob, kukunin ko yung tira na 'yun. Ganun din pala gagawin, titira rin sa labas," David said. 
"Pero give credit na rin kay James, talagang work hard siya at sa game gusto niya manalo."

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