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Allein Maliksi turns negative write-ups into inspiration for stellar Game 5 show

Allein Maliksi kept the receipts.

The Meralco veteran submitted his best showing of the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup Finals series on Friday night, and the motivation came from the articles he read following their Game 4 loss two nights ago, he admitted.

“Nakaka-challenge kasi ‘pag maganda laro mo, maganda rin ‘yung mga write-ups. Pero ‘pag nag-struggle ka, may mababasa kang write-ups,” he said during the postgame presser of their 92-88 win at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

Maliksi had noticeably been playing below expectations since dropping 15 points in the series opener last June 5.

He scored only eight points in Games 2 and 3 before making nine in the fourth match of the best-of-7 series.

But it wasn’t just him that struggled in Game 4. Bong Quinto, for one, saw himself held to just six points after dropping 16 back in Game 3.

Raymond Almazan only had two points and three rebounds after a 17-13 line in the previous outing.

2024-PBA-Philippine-Cup-Finals-Game-5-Meralco-def-San-Miguel-Allein-Maliksi-1 Allein Maliksi turns negative write-ups into inspiration for stellar Game 5 show Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports news

So, as one of their leaders, Maliksi urged both to step up, and he led by example. He fired 22 points on a 58-percent shooting clip together with five rebounds as he helped out in their strong fourth-quarter close-out.

Almazan found his offense back as he finished with 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting and four rebounds – all while helping defend June Mar Fajardo.

Quinto, ultimately, had eight points, three rebounds, two assists, and two steals.

“Talagang chinallenge ko yung sarili ko today to be aggressive, to be a leader, to be a veteran. Nag-usap kami ni Raymond, ni Bong, nakita namin yung article, sabi namin step up tayo,” said Maliksi, who was a +15 off the bench.

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Their big lift ultimately helped Meralco take the 3-2 lead to inch closer to giving the franchise its first-ever PBA title.

However, the grizzled gunner isn’t looking too far ahead, with their focus solely on Game 6 on Sunday and nowhere else.

“What’s to be happy about? Wala pa naman eh,” said the 36-year-old Maliksi, who’s aiming for his fifth league championship.

“We don’t think [about] the future, we stay in the moment. Prepare for Sunday’s game.”

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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