ROOKIE Troy Rosario lamented how the recent knee injury he suffered killed whatever momentum he gained following his notable showing with Gilas Pilipinas in the last Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
The TNT Katropa big man finally saw action for the team in the PBA Governors Cup for the first time against Alaska Friday night in a game which the Texters won by the skin of their teeth, 120-118.
The national team member was inserted by coach Jong Uichico early in the third period and suited up for a total of three minutes in his first game back since hyper-extending his right knee just before the start of the season-ending conference when he joined TNT Katropa fresh from his stint with Gilas.
Rosario admitted still trying to feel his way back, saying everything is back to zero for him after playing remarkably in his Gilas debut during the July 5-10 Olympic qualifiers at the Mall of Asia Arena.
He averaged 6.5 points and 7.0 rebounds in 20 minutes of play in the two games he played for Gilas in the OQT against France and New Zealand.
“Back to zero ako kasi kundisyon na ako tapos bigla akong na-injury,” he said. “Parang nawala lahat ng pinag-hirapan ko.”
The power forward out of National University stressed he’s still having difficulty moving, although he sees his present condition as somewhere between 70 to 80 percent.
Rosario said he has yet to completely join the team doing its daily drills in practice, although the past two days prior to the meeting with the Aces, he was able to join the Texters in full practice.
“Kaya hindi rin ako nagulat (about his brief stint). Tingin ko nagkaroon din sila (coaches) ng kumpiyansa dahil two times nga akong nakapag-practice,” said the year’s No. 2 overall rookie pick.
Rosario added he still needs to strengthen the injured knee which still impedes some of his movements. Nonetheless, the brief playing time he had against the Aces should be good enough to slowly break him back into harness.
“At least na-feel ko na ulit paano yung maglaro. Unti-unti. Isa-isa lang ulit,” he said.