WHILE the highly physical defense being put on Calvin Abueva has caused bumps and bruises, none has managed to break his spirit.
Alaska’s super rookie has managed to constantly deliver huge numbers for the Aces despite the highly physical defense being put on him by rivals, which he accepts as part of the game.
"Okay lang 'yun, kung ganoon talaga ka-physical ang depensa," said Abueva.
The Pampanga native, who has been hit in the nose twice by different defenders and endured multiple hits both while trying to score and while away from the ball, managed to register his sixth double-double of the season as the Aces ousted the Meralco Bolts from the PBA Philippine Cup.
"Ginagawa ko lang ang best ko para manalo sa game," Abueva added.
It was Abueva’s former Developmental League teammate Cliff Hodge who was tasked by Meralco to try and stop ‘The Beast,’ but the game stats were pretty much the same as in previous matches.
Abueva finished with 18 points, 12 rebounds, including two assists, one steal and three monster blocks in the Aces’ 88-70 rout of the Bolts for a sweep of their best-of-three quarterfinal showdown.
Focus on Abueva only becomes much more intense as the tournament progresses, especially with Best Player of the Conference stats leader Arwind Santos now out of the conference with the early exit of the Petron Blaze Boosters.
Santos ended the elimination round on top of the chart with 35.9 statistical points, followed by Abueva who had 32.7.
The former San Sebastian understands pain is temporary, and he is now bracing himself for tougher matches ahead.
“Lahat naman ng bagay dapat paghirapan,” said the former NCAA MVP. “Kasi hindi naman makukuha sa madalian yan. Ang sa akin, binigay ko naman yung best ko para maging maganda ang kinalabasan ng game namin at sana para pumasok sa Finals.
“Ngayon na malapit na kami doon, doble sipag pa sa ensayo at focus sa mga susunod na games.”