USUALLY, it’s an import’s actions on the court that make life easier for the locals.
But for Roi Sumang, it’s Bill Walker’s words that have made a bigger impact on himself and the rest of Blackwater in its mini win streak in the PBA Governors’ Cup.
Sumang registered a new career high of 32 points along with two boards, two steals, one steal, one block, and zero turnovers in 34 minutes to lead the Elite to their second straight win - 107-106 decision over NLEX on Friday.
The sophomore playmaker pointed to Walker as a major factor to his and the entire Elite’s improved play in the last two games when the former NLEX import came over to replace the injured Trevis Simpson.
“Grabe din si Henry mag-motivate sa amin,” Sumang said of Walker, who still filled the stats sheet with 29 points, 15 boards, six assists, and the game-saving block. “Siguro siya din yung factor kung bakit ganun laro namin.”
“Sobrang vocal siya,” he added. “Kahit sa practice namin, feeling mo na kahit mag-error ka sa practice ayaw na ayaw na nagkakamali ka, lalo na sa game sobrang vocal pa din siya. Kaya siguro ganun nagiging game namin, meron na talaga kamig leader sa court.”
Sumang also credited veteran point guard Denok Miranda for guiding him in his young career.
“Para sa akin, si Kuya Denok talaga, kasi siya yung laging nagpapaalala sa ’kin lalo na pag down na parang wala na, siya yung naglalapit sa akin, kung baga siya yung tatay ko sa court,” the 26-year-old cager said.
Sumang, Globalport’s third-round pick at 26th overall in the 2015 rookie draft, became the first player to be drafted in the third round or later to score at least the same output he did since PJ Simon did the trick in 2011.
But the former University of the East star insists he has plenty to work on.
“Siguro ‘di pa din (satisfied), para sa akin madami pa akong kulang,” Sumang said. “Siguro sustain ko lang yung ganyang game parang almost wala akong error kaya yun siguro magiging maganda yung game.”