PBA: The silver lining of Caguioa's injury for Barangay Ginebra

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PBA: The silver lining of Caguioa's injury for Barangay Ginebra

Post by betterhalf on Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:56 am

PBA: The silver lining of Caguioa's injury for Barangay Ginebra


Mark Caguioa (L) gives LA Tenorio a high-five, after Barangay Ginebra scored a 96-89 win over Barako Bull Energy Cola. Photo by KC Cruz

Barangay Ginebra San Miguel walked into the Smart Araneta Coliseum knowing they'd have to play without Mark Caguioa, the one player who has been a constant through the peaks and valleys on Ginebra's Commissioner's Cup campaign.

They looked confident, although there was a bit of uncertainty in their movement while they prepared to take on Barako Bull.

As Ginebra stepped onto the court, the familiar loud cheering of their fans was there, but it wasn't the same. In their past games, the barangay's noise kicked up to overdrive when Caguioa stepped in. This time it was different. It was still loud but it didn't get taken up a notch.

Caguioa was their Commissioner's Cup miracle. He was the gin that turned into wine, into vino. The Kings only had four wins up to that point, and none of those would have been possible without Caguioa. They even managed to compete in the dark days known as the Herbert Hill era because of Caguiao's brilliance. Now, like the players themselves, the fans needed to believe that they could win without him.

If Ginebra was missing Caguiao that game, they definitely didn't show it in the first quarter. They were their usual high-motor selves, forcing turnovers and converting on fast breaks. Chris Ellis gave out assists to a wide open Rudy Hatfield, LA Tenorio scored at will, Vernon Macklin was beating his man inside, and Billy Mamaril acted as the leader, calling everyone to a huddle every time something needed to be sorted out.

At the 7:22 mark, Vernon Macklin found himself open for a lay-up on the break with afoul from JC Intal. Just as Macklin prepared to take his bonus free throw a familiar figure moved into sight. Caguioa walked, more of limped actually, towards a seat behind their bench.

Caguioa sat beside an also sidelined Rico Maierhofer, who locked him ina tight embrace. He found his way to the baseline, sitting beside a police officer. There, Caguioa turned into his team's most vocal fan. He'd clap at every basket and stand up for every good stop. He bobbed his head when their fans started their Ginebra chants.

Things finally came together for Barangay GSM against Barako Bull. All the players did their best to fill the void left by their leader. The result was a 96-89 victory, their fourth straight, which brought them up to .500 in the standings. After their win, all of the player approached Caguioa as if to tell him that the win was dedicated to him.

"Lahat naman ng nangyayari may rason e," said Ginebra head coach Alfrancis Chua. "Kahit itong injury ni Mark sigurado akong may maidudulot na mabuti. More than 20 points per game iyan, kaya challenge talaga sa players. Buti na lang nag-step up sila."


Ginebra misses Mark Caguioa, but it does not mean they act idly and wait for his return. Instead, they all stepped up. No one player could match Caguioa's output but together, they softened up the blow that was caused by Caguioa's knee injury.

"Nagka-kumpiyansa yung ibang players because of the vacuum that Mark's absence created," Chua added. "Maganda para sa amin yan dahil pagbalik ni Mark, lalalim yung bench namin dahil lahat ay kumpiyansa na."


Jayjay Helterbrand, Caguiao's backcourt buddy, echoed his coach's insight. "If we could look this good without Mark, imagine how much better we will be when he comes back," Helterbrand said.

"It was a good win for us," Caguioa said as he walked to the dugout. "We need every win we can get right now."

"Did you talk to anyone in particular to step up in your absence?" I asked.

"Wala naman. Alam na nila yun. alam naman nila yung kailangan nilang ga win."

Mark Caguioa carried them when they had absolutely no confidence in themselves. Now it was their turn. Ginebra's message was to Caguioa was clear. Take the time you need to heal. We've got your back. Come back when you're 100 percent healthy because we need you on our trip to the promised land. - RAF/AMD, GMA News

Source: Gmanetwork

betterhalf
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Re: PBA: The silver lining of Caguioa's injury for Barangay Ginebra

Post by MR. FAST on Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:47 pm

Come back when you're 100 percent healthy because we need you on our trip to the promised land
yan din ang gusto ko! wag kang magmadaling bumalik baka lumalala pa yung injury mo

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