Reigning five-time MVP June Mar Fajardo was downcasted after his San Miguel Beermen absorbed a humiliating 82-118 beating in the hands of the Magnolia Hotshots in the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup, Wednesday night.
“Pangit ang nilaro namin at ang ganda ng nilaro nila sa kabila. Ang taas ng porsyento ng field goals. Talo,” the five-time Most Valuable Player lamented.
Despite the loss — the Beermen’s fourth in six outings — Fajardo still had a reason to be glad about.
It’s him seeing his close pal Marc Pingris be back on the hardwood after nearly 16 months away from it.
Pingris played his second game from that long layoff Wednesday, and that also meant meeting Fajardo again — the Gilas Pilipinas teammates last played against each other in the 2018 Philippine Cup elimination round.
“Masaya ako na nakabalik siya. Sino ba namang may gusto na ma-injure ang kalaban mo. Gusto nating makalaro siya ulit. Masaya ako na nakabalik siya. Sana maging healthy siya at maging one hundred-percent pa ang status niya.
“Na-miss namin ang isa’t isa, ang tagal naming hindi nakalaro eh,” expressed Fajardo, who also plays DOTA with Pingris during their downtime.
When Pingris went down with an ACL tear last year, Fajardo was one of the first players to visit him in the hospital. He was also there before and after Pingris’ surgery.
For the gentle giant from Cebu, he believes that Pingris’ return to Magnolia is definitely a big boost to the Hotshots, who have now won four straight matches after starting the mid-season joust with back-to-back losses.
“Siyempre, malaking morale booster yun sa kanila na nakabalik si Ping. Alam natin yung ano yung kayang ibigay ni Ping, di lang scoring kundi yung hustle, energy, at leadership niya,” shared the 29-year-old slotman.