It looks like Paul Desiderio has finally broken in into the pro ranks.
After averaging just a measly 4.3 points in his first three games, the 5-foot-11 combo guard produced 12 points on a 40 percent-clip when the Blackwater Elite faced the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters, Friday evening in Antipolo City.
Sadly, his efforts went down the drain as the Elite lost, 95-114. But at least Desiderio finally had a game he can build from as the season progresses.
“Career-high ko ba ‘to? Dahan-dahan ko lang sinusuklian yung trust ni coach Bong [Ramos],” said Desiderio, who’s about to turn 22 years old tomorrow, February 2.
“Lagi niyang sinasabi na, diskarte ka, kaya mo yan.”
Ramos, on the other hand, sung praises for Desiderio, whom he utilized for over 30 minutes.
“Well, si Desiderio kasi nakikita ko marami pang igagaling. Tatagal ang buhay nya sa PBA. Tatagal pa yan,” he said. “Dumidepensa, rumi-rebound. Laki ng puso eh.
“Kahit di siya shoomoo-shoot, malaki yung puso niya sa depensa.”
But as impressed as he may be, Ramos still hopes that Desiderio would be able to be more assertive on offense, just like what he had done before during his time with the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons in the UAAP.
“Medyo mahiyain pa. Sinasabihan na namin, atakehin mo, tirahan mo. Makikita mo, hindi naman duwag. Pero panira na ayaw itira. Pero kanina nung nakita nyang tambak na kami, ayun, bumigay na. So sana, tumuloy na ulit,” shared the second-year Elite head coach.
“‘Pag kumapal na mukha niyan, iiskor na yan.”