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Jolas assures Mikey Williams will get starting nod once he fully recovers from injury

ANTIPOLO – Mikey Williams once again came off the bench for TNT in their PBA Governors’ Cup meeting with Rain or Shine, Friday night.

The reigning scoring king wasn’t part of the Tropang Giga’s starting unit just like in their opener versus Phoenix Super LPG last Wednesday, a move quickly noticed by the fans given that he has always been in the first five.

It turns out that he has not reached full health after having a ‘really difficult time’ going through rehabilitation of both his Achilles heels, according to no less than head coach and team manager Jojo Lastimosa.

“There’s a reason why he was coming off the bench at the beginning. Because he wasn’t in shape yet,” the cage legend disclosed shortly after their 105-100 come-from-behind win at the Ynares Center here.

“Not yet. He was trying to get back in shape. He had a really difficult time rehabbing his two Achilles heels,” he furthered.

Williams himself admitted as much, even explaining that the injuries he suffered during the 2022 Philippine Cup Finals worsened when he decided to play through it in the recently concluded Commissioner’s Cup.

“It was from the Finals of the All-Filipino Cup. Just me playing through it kinda hurt it a little more. So I’m just tryna gradually get it back right, each and every day just tryna do everything I can to make sure it’s strengthened,” he said.

The 31-year-old, though, said that it’s getting better, and proof of this was the way he performed against the Elasto Painters.

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He finished with 24 points, none bigger than the three-pointer over Beau Belga he nailed with 26.3 seconds left to play that served as the dagger — and completed TNT’s spirited comeback from 18 points down.

Williams, who only scored nine in their win against Phoenix, scored 16 of his points in the second half. Overall, he shot 50-percent from the floor, including six triples, and also tallied 10 rebounds and seven assists.

2023-PBA-Governors-Cup-Rain-or-Shine-vs-TNT-Mikey-Williams Jolas assures Mikey Williams will get starting nod once he fully recovers from injury Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports news

(C) PBA Images

“My teammates have been telling me to stay aggressive,” he said. “I’ve been slowly, gradually trying to find my rhythm. I feel like I’m not totally a hundred percent right now but I’m pushing through.

“In the second half, I just tried to be aggressive, and just tried to make plays not only for myself but for my teammates,” he continued.

Lastimosa is, of course, glad to see his prized guard’s progress, and said that he’ll be back to his place among the starters eventually.

“Mikey is eventually gonna go back to the starting lineup. But now like you could see in the second half, he already started the second half,” he said.

“And it’s going to be like that. That’s his spot. Now that we can see that he’s already close to his normal self, you can see more of him, of course.”

The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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