AN offensive machine before, a defensive demon now.
Import Marqus Blakely takes a different approach in his third tour of duty with San Mig Coffee, stressing he’s concentrating more on getting rebounds and playing defense in his effort to help the team retain the PBA Governors Cup and complete a rare grand slam.
“Rebounding is one thing I got to focus on. That would give us more shots offensively and defensively,” said Blakely, who first played for the franchise in 2012. “Scoring is the last thing I’ll be worrying about.”
Blakely, a solid player on the open court, appeared rusty in the Mixers’ 76-66 victory over the Barako Bull Energy on Wednesday night in the team’s first game since bagging the Commissioner’s Cup title.
The 6-foot-4 Vermont standout finished with just 10 points on 4-of-16 shooting from the floor, but contributed 24 rebounds, four assists, and two blocks in a solid all-around effort.
“When you go out there and play, the one goal everybody wants to do is to win. So it’s just winning one game at a time,” Blakely said afterwards.
The 25-year-old American said it is understandable for him and the Mixers to struggle in their first game together this conference, considering he plays differently from San Mig’s previous import James Mays.
“It’s a chemistry thing. Like the transformation from James being an inside threat, to me being a wing slash post player. So it’s me being able to mesh with them (Mixers),” he said.
Blakely is confident that as the short conference progresses, he’ll be able to iron out the kinks and contribute more in the team’s quest for a rare Grand Slam.