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    Arwind more than just a 10K-point player: ‘Gusto ko manalo, mag-champion’

    Jul 2, 2022
    Arwind Santos
    Arwind Santos joins an elite scoring club.
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño

    ARWIND Santos is grateful to achieve another milestone in his PBA career on Saturday.

    Arwind Santos on joining 10k-point club

    But the veteran forward would want people to remember him more than being one of the select players to score 10,000 career points in the 47-year history of the league.

    “Basta yun lang ako. Ang gusto ko mag-champion, manalo, makatulong sa team. Yun lang. Tapos yung mga naniniwala sa akin, malaman nila na si Arwind, competitive, na lagi kong binibigay ang best ko sa laro,” said the NorthPort big man.

    “Yun lang ang identity (ko). Kapag sinabing Arwind Santos hindi lang lang dahil sa 10,000 points. Lumalaban kapag dikdikan ang laro.”

    On Saturday night, the 41-year-old Santos made history anew after becoming the latest player to reach the 10,000-point plateau during NorthPort’s Philippine Cup game against San Miguel at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

    He entered the game needing just 13 points to reach the mark, something that was not lost to him.

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    “Hindi ko siya makalimutan kasi yung mga anak ko isa sila sa makukulit, isa sila sa mga nagpapa-alala sa akin,” Santos said. “Kaya sinabihan ko yung mga anak ko, ‘relax lang, darating yan, makukuha rin ni tatay yan. Huwag natin pilitin. Siyempre may sistema kami, may game plan kami. Dapat about the team pa rin, hindi yung about sa sarili ko kaya nakuha ko yan.”

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    Santos became only the third player to achieve the feat in the last 21 years after James Yap and Mark Caguioa, both MVP winners like the ‘Spiderman.’

    The pride of Lubao, Pampanga said it was a blessing that he didn’t suffer any major injury in his 16-year pro career, enabling him to achieve the feat.

    “God is good talaga na umabot ako (dito), na God is good na wala akong injury na malala,” said Santos. “Suwerte pa rin ako na nakakapag-perform pa rin ako. Hindi ko akalain talaga.”

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    The landmark is just the latest career feat for the 2013 MVP, who last season made it to the Mythical First Team, All-Defensive Team, and named Defensive Player of the Year despite his advanced age.

    So is scoring 11,000 career points still possible?

    Santos offered a hearty laugh, but said it’s not bad for any individual to set a personal goal.

    “Depende, hindi mo rin masasabi. Pero maganda rin kasi yung may goal kang ganyan,” he said. “Malay natin maabot natin. Tignan natin kung kaya natin.”

    Unfortunately, San Miguel, the team where Santos won all of his nine league championships, spoiled his career night after dealing NorthPort a 122-106 beating for its fifth straight loss and a 2-5 record overall.

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      But definitely, no one can deny Santos this memorable night in his pro career.

      “Nagpapasalamat ako sa mga nagtitiwala sa akin lalo na sa mga coaches ko. Kasi kapag ang coach walang tiwala sa iyo, hindi mo makukuha ang mga bagay na ito,” he said.

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      “Nung nagsimula ako, gusto ko lang makatulong sa team, gusto ko lang kung nakakapag-laro ako may kontribusyon ako,” Santos added. “Hindi ko naman ito minadali. Dumaan ako sa tamang proseso. Basta laro lang ako. Ngayong nandiyan yung 10,000 points, sobrang nakakatuwa. Isang na namang harvest sa history ng buhay ko.”

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      Arwind Santos joins an elite scoring club.
      PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño
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