John Holland is fully aware that his responsibility with San Miguel has gotten bigger following Dez Wells’ departure.
The high-octane Wells was among the four Beermen indefinitely suspended by the team due to a fight that broke out in practice last Sunday but a report that came out Wednesday said that he had already left the country.
So that leaves Holland alone, and he will most likely be SMB’s reinforcement for the rest of the PBA Governors’ Cup.
“It’s always been a lot of pressure to play,” said Holland, who was brought in by the Beermen last November 8 as Wells suffered an ankle injury during their match versus the Meralco Bolts last October 27 which they lost.
Holland, though, showed little to no pressure with the way he delivered for San Miguel in its meeting with TNT KaTropa Wednesday night as he made 25 points, 11 rebounds, six steals, three assists, and a block in all 48 minutes.
That is clearly a much better outing compared to his debut last November 9 versus Rain or Shine Elasto Painters in Cebu, where he only had 10 points, 10 boards, and six dimes though he didn’t have enough time to prepare for that.
Despite the better numbers, that wasn’t enough as the Beermen’s comeback from 18 down fell short, 109-114.
“I’m just trying to adjust as quick as possible. It’s better than first game; coming off the plane and stuff. Second game is better but I still think there’s still a lot to be improved,” said the former NBA cager. “We don’t have time to do it.”
The Beermen have suffered a tough blow with the defeat as they failed to secure a Top Four finish which merits a twice-to-beat edge for the quarterfinals. Instead, they slid down to fifth, and will face the fourth-seeded Barangay Ginebra.
Still, Holland believes his team is capable of turning things around despite the challenges on their way.
“It’s a harder road now but we still have enough talent to do it so I’m still confident in us. I still think that no matter team we play we have a good chance. Now it’s just a little harder, we just need to win two games. It’s alright,” he said.
“It’s a tough situation but it is what it is, it’s the playoffs. We have to deal with all that adversity and just keep pushing and push through it. And I think we have enough talent on the team to do it so I think it’s just about getting it done now.”