Kiefer Ravena denies 'inevitable' insinuations that NLEX gave way to 'sister team' TNT
Kiefer Ravena was quick to shoot down insinuations that NLEX gave the game away to sister team TNT. Jerome Ascano

KIEFER Ravena shot down insinuations that NLEX gave way to sister squad TNT KaTropa by way of a 101-75 loss that kept the Texters in contention for a playoff spot in the PBA Philippine Cup.

The Road Warriors were already bound for the postseason and could afford a loss, while the Texters were in a must-win situation to stay alive, prompting the talks from fans and fanned after TNT rolled to the lopsided victory.  

But Ravena insisted they didn’t give the game away.  

“No, no, no, that was one thing that we were really avoiding to hear – na marinig namin sa ibang tao na binigay namin kasi Talk N Text badly needs a win,” the rookie playmaker said. “Siguro that was you know, ganoon talaga, sa sobrang sama ng pinakita namin, ganoon talaga yung lumabas.

“We can't blame anybody for that,” he added. “Sabi nga ni coach Yeng, we could have lost this game but not this way. It's a terrible way to lose especially coming into the playoffs.”

“I guess to cut everything out, hindi naman talaga namin binigay dahil nga kailangan nila ng panalo, that's one thing that we want to avoid, but it's inevitable but we move on from this,” he continued.

Ravena’s rare poor performance factored in the loss where he was held to a measly point after missing all his three shots, and committing two turnovers in just 12 minutes of play, although he had two assists, and one board.

One of his two turnovers early in the game also resulted in a tongue-lashing from coach Yeng Guiao – a show of his tough love on his prized freshman.  

“I guess that's one thing na ayaw ni coach Yeng – alam mo na na nagkamali yung una, bakit mauulit pa?” Ravena said. “So yun talaga yung mga pet peeves ni coach Yeng and that was my mistake. And you know, I'll learn from it for sure and it's something that's not with me.”

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“Alam ko naman na I can make better decisions than that and you know, kung mabigyan man ng tyansa tumira yung kakampi ko or team ko, mali ko yun and we learn from that,” he added. “Coach Yeng is really like that. Lahat naman kami alam namin na he just cares for us and wants us to learn and know how to play real basketball.”

Still, one of Ravena’s takeaways was being able to play against his dad and TNT assistant coach Bong.

“It's not so very often na nagkakaroon ng chances yung mga second generation players to go up against their dads so you know, he has one over me, they beat us badly and it was a bad way to lose,” the younger Ravena said. “But I guess you have to learn from this, ito yung mga bagay na hindi mo pwedeng kalimutan so kailangan ayusin na lang namin coming into the playoffs.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos