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LA Tenorio’s career-high game reveals Gilas afterglow
LA Tenorio (C) turned in a sizzling performance versus Meralco. Nuki Sabio
I want to believe that for Gilas players, the FIBA-Asia Championship was a life-changing experience. It wasn’t just another tournament. The Pilipinas jersey wasn’t just another uniform to hang in the closet. Mas dramatic kasi kung may catharsis.
Thus, I propose that LA Tenorio’s 34-point performance against Meralco last August 24 and his participation in the national team are linked. Like it’s part of a chain of events. Career-high 34 points plus seven rebounds and seve assists? Perfect 5-of-5 clip from three-point territory? There has to be a connection, right?
[Related: Tenorio tallies career-high 34 to lead Ginebra past Meralco]
“Somehow I guess,” Tenorio, Ginebra’s starting point guard, said. “Iba kasi ang PBA compared sa FIBA. Mas physical ang PBA. Siguro doon sa aspect ng confidence level of myself after FIBA-Asia and the team’s confidence in me, may connection. Confidence level ko after FIBA mataas talaga. Pero may halong swerte din eh.”
LA’s probably right. Baka nga swerte lang? Players can enter that trance on any night. Everything feels right. Every shot feels perfect. Luck plays out on random Saturdays. It can happen to anyone. Maybe luck doesn’t even care about possible links between August 1-11 and August 24. No one has to connect the dots.
Besides, PBA players are pros. You know, they’re the kind of professional athletes supposedly unaffected by the sentimental mumbo-jumbo of career-altering journeys. Games are games. Basketball is basketball. Same same lang dapat yan. Another assignment. Another opponent. Another day.
I can insist that Tenorio’s seminal performance is a byproduct of audacity. That the conscious decision to play for Gilas can somehow lead to one of many memorable stat-lines. When you choose to expand your knowledge of the game, when you leave your comfort zone so you can improve, when you embark on a mission not many were willing to take, you theoretically return to your mother ball-clubs as altered players.
I asked, “Would you say na lahat ng Gilas players parang nag-turbo-boost ang kumpyansa because of the trips to Lithuania, New Zealand and the stint in the FIBA-Asia tournament?”
“Yes,” Tenorio replied. “And I always make sure na lahat ng natutunan namin doon sa mga training namin ginagawa ko talaga. And I share it sa team namin.”
Basketball-wise, the recent Gilas experience reinforces our ability to improve. Kaya natin to seek a global standard; it’s a bold attitude that’s applicable to almost anything actually. Alam natin mas mahirap to widen perspective. Mas madali to stay as is. It’s the seduction of the status quo. It’s not just about winning games. It’s about breaking norms. Be better. Think bigger. Kahit mas madaling sabihing, “’Wag na lang, asa ka pa.” or “’Wag na lang, hassle eh.” or “’Wag na lang, as is na lang.”
Tenorio’s 34-point opus might have been just accidental. Swertehan lang. Yet I notice his aura. I notice the aura of his other Gilas teammates. Kitang-kita. They have an afterglow. Therefore, I want to believe in a connection between then and now. It just makes more sense to do so. - AMD, GMA News
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