FOR someone who's playing in his final year, Jun Manzo hasn't had the best of years this UAAP Season 82.
The Cebuano guard has only been averaging 6.1 points on a 36-percent shooting from the field, on top of 3.8 assists, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.3 steals despite University of the Philippines riding high up the standings.
But a timely talk with his longtime teammate Paul Desiderio seemingly put him in the right mindset to continue the Fighting Maroons' campaign this year.
"Nung Thursday, minessage niya ako sa Instagram na, 'Dong, kain tayo.' Di ko alam na kakausapin na pala niya ako," the 22-year-old shared.
It was the pep talk Manzo needed, especially after the dud he had in UP's 82-79 overtime defeat to FEU last week, where he got seven points, three rebounds, and two steals, but was a horrifying minus-30 in his 22 minutes on the floor.
"Last game kasi, ang sama ng laro ko. Talagang nada-down na ako at di ko alam gagawin," he said.
"Parang nage-gets niya ako, so pinapunta niya ako sa bahay niya, nagluto siya ng isda at sabaw. Pagkatapos kumain, kinausap niya ako ng heart-to-heart at sinabihan niya ako na wag akong mawalan ng pag-asa dahil malayo pa yung season. Pagkatapos noon, gumaan na yung loob ko."
That talk was the much-needed shot of confidence Manzo needed as he performed better for UP in its 78-75 victory over UE, finishing with a season-best 17 points, five assists, and three rebounds.
And he has no one else to thank for than his close friend Desiderio.
"Syempre, si Paul naman yung kumuha sa akin at parang kapatid ko na siya dito sa Manila kaya malaking bagay yun para sa akin," the senior guard said.
"Naisip ko na dapat di talaga ako mawawala sa season na ito. Lumalakas loob ko lagi pag kinakausap niya ako at lumabas yun ngayon. Nag-click talaga ako salamat kay Paul."