TROY Rosario practically conceded the Rookie of the Year race to Chris Newsome after the TNT Katropa freshman failed to live up to expectations for his team in the PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals against Meralco.
Coming into the series slightly ahead of the Bolts playmaker in the average statistical points standings, Rosario faltered in the Final Four for the Texters while Newsome came through for his team to bridge the gap.
And Rosario feels his closest pursuer is bound to overtake him – if he hasn’t already – as Newsome is set to have more games under his belt in the finals.
“Pwede na natin ibigay sa kanya,” the No. 2 pick in the last year’s draft admitted after their 94-88 loss in Game Four. “Alam ko naman na konti lang ang diprensya namin yung nilabas yung stats. Ngayon, papasok pa siya sa finals. Bigay na natin sa kanya.”
Showing he has fully recovered from a knee injury that sidelined him for the first two games of the conference, Rosario averaged a decent 9.6 points and 5.2 boards when he returned the rest of the elimination round.
The 24-year-old stretch forward even registered 16 points built around four three-pointers in the Texters’ Game One win over the Bolts, but he proved to be his team’s barometer for success as he played nowhere near his potential in the next three games.
Rosario did contribute 10 points, eight boards, and one steal in almost 31 minutes as a starter in Game Four, but his other teammates failed to step up as they saw their campaign come to a disappointing end.
“Syempre mas gusto ko pa sana maglaro, pero ganun talaga, may katapusan,” Rosario said.
“Pero sa tingin ko, sa first season ko, medyo okay na rin,” he added. “Nakulangan ako, pero okay na para sa akin.”