AS he buried only his second three-pointer of the game, Terrence Romeo pointed to his red Kobe 9s, implying the pair of shoes was the reason why he made the heave from way beyond the arc.
Firing blanks while wearing gray/yellow Kobe 6s for most of the match, the GlobalPort star decided to change sneakers and wear a newer version of Kobe Bryant’s signature shoe late in the Batang Pier’s 101-94 win over Star on Friday night in the Smartbro-PBA Philippine Cup.
“Sabi ko, ‘bakit hindi ako maka-shoot dito sa sapatos ko’, eh masyado ako mapamahiin eh,” Romeo admitted. “So inisip ko na lang magpalit ng sapatos.”
The ploy seemed to work wonders as Romeo, who had been just 7-of-21 from the field, knocked down a left-wing triple that gave the Batang Pier a 13-point lead with a little over two minutes left, dousing a late Star rally on the way to their first victory in the all-Filipino conference.
“Nagulat ako, pag suot ko ng sapatos at pag tira na pag tira ko na ang layo sa three points, pumasok. So sabi ko, ‘medyo (may epekto).’”
“Pero syempre kay God pa rin yun,” he was quick to add. “Dagdag psychological lang sa akin.”
The 5-foot-11 Gilas Pilipinas rookie seemed to also lose his balance in one early play wearing his Kobe 6s, which he usually wears for practices.
“Isa rin yun, yung pag-drive ko kanina, parang pumasok yung paa ko sa loob eh, so parang kinabahan ako,” the 23-year-old cager recounted. “Hindi ko maintindihan yung sapatos ko eh. Kulang na lang sabihin ko na, ‘bakit hindi ka kumakapit?’ Ba’t ang gulo mo?’”
Then he shifted to his Kobe 9s, his go-to pair during the Fiba Asia Championship.
Still, the former UAAP MVP felt he was not his usual self despite finishing with 20 points on 8-of-24 shooting, three steals, one assist, and one board in 25 minutes off the bench.
“Medyo gigil pa ako.”
What more once he regains his groove?