ROBBIE Herndon played down his career night in Magnolia’s season opener, saying he embraces the job as role player in a talent-loaded squad.
The Fil-Am guard-forward from California came up with 16 points to lead the Hotshots in an overtime loss to TNT Katropa on Sunday in the Philippine Cup.
Paul Lee suffered a finger injury and went scoreless, but Herndon said there was no conscious effort to take over since Magnolia has several scoring options.
Ian Sangalang scored 15, while Jio Jalalon added 12.
“I just continue to play my game,” Herndon said. “I know what I’m capable of. I’m still going to play in the team’s system. I play to win. Whatever it takes. I let the game to naturally come to me. The shots were falling so I kept shooting.”
Herndon, the sixth pick overall in the 2017 draft, said he has accepted the all-around role in the big league after working as the go-to guy in developmental teams.
“In the D-League, pretty much my only job was to score, and score a lot. Here, it is different. We have a lot of scorers on the team. And this is more of a defensive system so we focus on defense first and we let the offense come to us,” said Herndon.
“If it’s scoring, more scoring. If it’s defense, defense. Just whatever happens, happens,” he added.
The 25-year-old Herndon was coming off a Governors’ Cup campaign in which he played quality minutes for the Hotshots, even scoring nine points in Game One in the series against Alaska.
But Herndon is not getting carried away.
“I think it’s time to move on from that. The finals, that was in the past. We celebrated and that’s over now. So we are focused on the new conference,” said Herndon.