It may have been his first-ever semifinal game in the pro ranks, but Javee Mocon showed no rookie jitters.
The San Beda product put up 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters past the Magnolia Hotshots, 84-77, to take Game One of their 2019 PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven semis series on Friday night.
Mocon was part of the young Elasto Painters’ group that stormed back in the third quarter. Rain or Shine turned an eight-point deficit to a 54-48 lead with 4:30 on the clock, which they hung on to for the victory.
“I think wala namang bago dun kasi ever since na nag-start yung playoffs, nag-usap kami ni Rey [Nambatac] na etong mga veterans, once na lumabas, all-out kami kahit anong mangyari,” Mocon said.
“Papakamatay kami sa loob.”
But as impressive as he’d been, Mocon downplayed his performance, saying that he still has much work to do.
“Para sa’kin, okay lang. Kasi at the fourth quarter ang dami kong turnovers, so ang dami ko pang lapses. Marami pa ako dapat matutunan,” said the 24-year-old, who committed his two turnovers in the game’s last five minutes.
Mocon also gave credit to RoS head coach Caloy Garcia and the veterans around him for his fine play. He pointed out that they are all vital part to his growth, thanks to the confidence and lessons he’s been showered with.
“All thanks to him [coach Garcia] din kasi he gave me that confidence in the eliminations, pinapasok niya ako eh. Dun nag-build yung confidence ko tsaka sa help din ng mga veterans,” said the Elasto Painters’ sixth overall pick in the 2018 Draft.
The 6-foot-4 forward also saw his fair share of the opposing team’s physical play, but he remained unflappable. For Mocon, having played in the country’s Grand Old League means he’s used to ruggedness.
“Batang NCAA eh,” said the four-time NCAA champion with the Red Lions. “Ganun sa NCAA physical talaga. Sa Beda, I think dun ako nag-grow maging ready sa playoffs sa PBA.
“Wala naman yun, physicality is all part of the game.”
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