CHRIS Tiu helped hold down top Ginebra playmaker LA Tenorio in Game One of their quarterfinal series, but the Rain or Shine rookie quickly deflected the credit after their 82-65 demolition of the Gin Kings on Wednesday night.
Tiu, the seventh overall pick in the draft, showed he has the pace to shadow the cat-quick Tenorio, as he helped limit his former Ateneo teammate to just six points on 2-for-7 shooting and two assists in the Painters' lopsided victory.
“I think it’s a collaborative effort. Everybody can step up anytime. It was no pressure for me because it’s not just one guy. So I’m a bit more secure. Si LA probably had an off night,” Tiu told Spin.ph after the match.
Tiu, who played just his fifth game this conference after missing much of the Philippine Cup due to hamstring injury, said he was glad to be able to contribute in a small way to the Elasto Painters’ playoff run.
Still, he expects the Gin Kings to bounce back strong on Friday in Game Two because of their never-say-die spirit and with the help of the fans.
“Relieved na up kami ngayon, 1-0, but it’s a short series. This is a never-say-die team. Ginebra, they have the fans behind them always. They have what it takes to come back so we can’t be complacent,” he added.
The former Ateneo guard and Smart-Gilas mainstay finished the game with six points, four rebounds, three assists, and one steal in 21 minutes of action.