Larry Fonacier has been playing with fire in his eyes this conference, trying to prove that he still has it. And after 12 years in the league, he feels like he has found a new calling with the NLEX Road Warriors.
Fonacier’s renewed intensity was in full display on Sunday night during NLEX’s 103-100 win over the San Miguel Beermen.
After nailing two booming triples that created a cushion for the Road Warriors during the clutch moments of the game, the 35-year-old tasked himself to inbound the ball that led to free throws for JR Quinahan. And on the defensive end, the 6-foot-2 swing man hounded Alex Cabagnot, swatting away a desperation three to book NLEX’s ticket to the quarterfinals.
“Larry is vintage from ten years ago [sic],” expressed Guiao, who drafted Fonacier as the 14th overall pick in the 2005 Draft.
“He’s playing well for us, not only the leadership but also the scoring.”
Fonacier continued the throwback mood by sharing what Guiao told him during their two-year stay in Red Bull.
“He’s trained me to be ready for those moments,” reflected Fonacier, who finished the game with 16 points, four rebounds, three assists, two blocks, and a steal.
“Sabi niya, ‘Pag matagal ka na dito sa liga, you’ll welcome those moments and do not be afraid.'”
And even up to this day, Guiao continues to motivate Fonacier.
“Tinulungan niya ako na mabuo yung loob ko dito sa liga. I thank him for the tough love while we’re still at Red Bull.”