Nard Pinto has been one of Blackwater’s reliable cogs in the 2018 PBA Governors’ Cup. Aside from being an all-around force for the Elite, the burly point guard has been shooting an excellent 65 percent from beyond the arc.
But on Tuesday, in the Elite’s most important game of the conference – their quarterfinal clash with the Magnolia Hotshots – Pinto went cold.
The 5’11” guard was just 1-of-6 from beyond the arc – 1-of-9 from the floor – and only had seven points. And the most crucial shot he missed happened in the game’s last five seconds: a triple that could’ve given Blackwater a 102-101 lead.
“Even nung mga past games namin, nahihit ko yung crucial na threes ko. Pero ngayon, bakit ngayon pa? Tinatanong ko, bakit ngayon pa? Bakit ngayon pa maalat?” a rueful Pinto wondered moments after the sour defeat.
“Pero wala eh, sabi nga nila, mashushoot mo, minsan mami-miss mo. Gusto ko nga balikan yung time na yun, ititira ko ulit. Pagtira ko pa lang feel ko mashu-shoot eh. Ayun. Wala ako magagawa e. Siguro two days ‘to [na] ‘di ako makakatulog.”
Tuesday’s loss is a bitter pill to swallow for Blackwater. This is not the way they envisioned themselves exiting the season, since they had a solid start into the Governors’ Cup – the Elite opened the tilt with four straight wins.
So for Pinto, their focus for the next season is how will they get over that hump.
“Maganda naman yung start kaso nga ‘di naman nakikita diyan yung ano ng team namin. Ang sakit kasi andun na kami eh, one game na lang para sa Top Four spot, ngayon kung nanalo kami one game lang din para sa semis,” he rued.
“Lagi kaming short. Young team naman kami, kailangan namin lagpasan yung hump kasi laging ganun eh.”
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