BIÑAN, Laguna - The wait was worth it as Paul Zamar made a solid PBA debut for Blackwater in the team's 105-91 loss to Ginebra in the Commissioner's Cup on Friday night.
Six years after he heard his name get called in the rookie draft, the 30-year-old playmaker heard his name announced by the barker when he checked in late in the first quarter, providing a spark for the Elite.
Zamar proved to be the silver lining in the defeat as he registered 15 points - although 12 came at garbage time - four triples, six rebounds, and one assist without a single turnover in over 21 minutes.
"Sa tingin ko, dapat ganun naman talaga yung attitude ng isang professional basketball player na regardless gamitin ka one minute or matagal, dapat ready ka maglaro," said Zamar, who signed with the Elite after an impressive stint with Mono Vampire in the ABL. "Kapag binunot ka sa bench, ready ka."
"Looking forward sa next game. Hopefully, mas maganda yung result namin," he added.
Zamar, at 29 the second oldest rookie in the PBA after Manny Pacquiao, felt he was ready to hear the jeers from the Ginebra crowd after getting used to hostile environments in the ABL.
"Ang maganda sa ABL, pine-prepare ka tulad nyan sa Ginebra, hostile crowd," Zamar said. "Parang home and away games ng ABL. Nasanay ka na sa crowd."
"Siyempre nung una nangangapa pa, pero nung nagtuloy-tuloy na yung laro, nakapag-adjust na ako," he added.
Still, the former University of the East standout admitted that there's plenty of work to be done.
"Kailangan pa naming mag-adjust sa bagong system ni coach Bong," Zamar said. "Ako rin, bagong player lang din ako so nasa adjustment period pa ako."