Paul Lee is simply hoping that he won’t incur any major injury after getting hurt in the Magnolia Hotshots’ 2019 PBA Philippine Cup clash with the NorthPort Batang Pier, Wednesday evening.
The gunslinging guard fell down to the floor with 7:26 remaining in the third quarter after his right knee hit the leg of Batang Pier rookie Robert Bolick, who was defending him.
“Masakit, masakit siya,” lamented the 30-year-old Lee. “‘Wag naman sana lumala ng grabe kasi same area nung natamaan sakin nung game namin sa Columbian.
“Medyo masakit ngayon.”
Lee though managed to come back after a short while, and even finished with 24 points on 8-of-16 shooting on top of four assists, and three rebounds to lead the Hotshots to a 103-90 victory.
The win — their bounce-back from Sunday’s loss to Ginebra — hiked their card to 4-5 to forge a three-way tie with NLEX Road Warriors and Alaska Aces at the sixth spot of the standings.
“Lagi kami sinasabihan ni coach na play through it. Tuloy lang namin, kapit lang kami sa isa’t-isa. Halos lahat naman may nararamdaman na pero nakikita mo wala naman nagre-reklamo,” said Lee.
“Good sign yun na makikita namin sa isa’t-isa na walang gumi-give up. Magandang motivation yun sa’min.”
Giving up is not in Magnolia’s vocabulary, and that was evident in the win. They fought back from 10 down late in the third by pulling off a 16-3 run to take an 85-82 lead early in the final frame.
And when the Batang Pier managed to tie the game at 89-all with 6:16 remaining in the match, the Hotshots turned to their defense and unloaded a 14-1 scoring blitz to finish the game.
Lee couldn’t be prouder.
“Second quarter  points sila. Second half, thirty-one points na lang sila,” said Lee, whose Magnolia limited NorthPort to just eight points in the fourth. “Credit sa lahat, nag-respond yung buong team.
“Marami kami binigay na fastbreak points nung first half pero na-limit na namin sa second half. Credit sa lahat talaga, pinakita namin na gusto namin talaga makuha yung game.”