If anyone in the PBA embodies the word “tough,” it has to be import Olu Ashaolu.
The 6-foot-5 forward is currently hobbled by a slight patellar tendon rupture in his right knee. But that hasn’t been enough to pull him back, as he has been impressive for the NLEX Road Warriors so far this 2018 Governors’ Cup.
In his second game for NLEX on Sunday evening, Ashaolu produced 27 points on 12-of-20 shooting and 13 rebounds to lead the Road Warriors to a 123-107 triumph over Rashad Woods and the debuting NorthPort Batang Pier.
“I probably shouldn’t be playing but I mean, I’m here to play basketball. I’m a player… I’m gonna keep playing.
“Until we figure out a plan moving forward, as of right now I’ll keep getting some wins for this team,” expressed the 30-year-old.
One can’t help but wonder how Ashaolu keeps playing at such a high level given his knee’s condition. But for the Nigerian-Canadian, he’s simply not letting it stop him from doing what he wants.
“I wasn’t playing eight months ago, I had a surgery. I really thought the game was gonna get taken away from me,” shared the product of the Oregon Ducks program.
“I have a second chance at playing, I’m not gonna let something minor stop me.”
Head coach Jojo Lastimosa bared that Ashaolu’s tendon is torn by 70 percent, which means that “half of it is dangling already.” But Ashaolu is still grateful, as his injury won’t require any surgery to repair.
“The partial tear, I don’t need surgery – thankfully. If I need surgery, I’m not playing, that’s for sure. I just need some rest and rehab. That’s a good thing, I don’t need surgery,” said the six-year journeyman.
“That’s a blessing.”
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