TNT head coach Chot Reyes couldn’t feel happier to see Ryan Reyes slowly regain his form after going through a tough stretch early in the PBA season.
The decorated mentor said that the 38-year-old forward was in high spirits entering the new cage wars, until COVID-19 came his way.
“Well, Ryan Reyes had a fantastic preseason, and he started the tournament really well,” shared Reyes.
“Unfortunately, he had to go down because of COVID. And that really delayed his progress in this tournament.
“But now, little by little, as you can see in the game, I think he’s picking it up,” added the league’s only five-time Coach of the Year.
The Tropang Giga on Friday evening conquered a tired Alaska through a 103-85 rout to conclude their 2021 PBA Philippine Cup elimination round campaign. And Reyes was very much a reason behind the victory.
The veteran two-way specialist finished with nine points, all of which he made in the final frame. He also buried three straight triples to help the top-seeded crew inflate their lead to 17, 83-66, approaching the last six minutes.
Reyes also collected five rebounds, a conference-high two blocks, and a steal in the 15 minutes and 37 seconds he played off the bench.
Such an outing is indicative of his progress. In their 102-92 victory of NorthPort just last Wednesday, the 14-year vet only had six points. He also had nine rebounds, three assists, three steals, and a block in 28 minutes of action.
“Malaking bagay sa’min si Ryan because he does so many things eh,” said his coach. “I mean, if he makes his three-point shots, that’s great.
“But ‘yung value niya sa’min is a lot of intangibles, a lot of the little things he does on defense.”
This, indeed, is good news for a TNT side looking to go deeper into the playoffs, which could possibly start by next week.
“So we’re very happy that he’s hitting his stride, he’s getting his game back. Because certainly, we’ll need everybody to be at their best if we’re going to go deep in the playoffs.”