Charles Rhodes was evidently upbeat moments after he and the San Miguel Beermen had thrashed the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters on Saturday night, but it was not just their fifth straight victory that made him happy.
For the 6-foot-8 American reinforcement, their game against the now-4-3 Elasto Painters was something he took personally, especially as he had gone up against the opposition’s import — 6-foot-9 center Shawn Taggart.
As it turns out, both the veteran journeymen had a rich history between them — a past that traces back to 2008, when they were still representing their respective schools in the US NCAA.
“That was my last college game against Taggart in Memphis,” recalled Rhodes, a Mississippi State alum, about their face-off in the second round of the 2008 NCAA Tournament in which they had lost to a Derrick Rose-led Memphis, 77-74.
“I just wanted to win this game because last time, I lost. It’s all about revenge.”
It was indeed revenge served cold by Rhodes to his counterpart, as he tallied 26 markers in the game. However, despite another steady outing, the Galveston, Texas-bred cager suffered from foul trouble, hearing the referee’s whistle blow at him for five times.
But luckily for him, the locals around him stepped up and picked up the slack when he was in trouble. And for that, Rhodes could not be more thankful.
“It’s a bigger breather to be 5-0 and win this game with my team stepping up when I got in foul trouble. I give a lot of credit to my teammates for stepping up like that and I really appreciate them for that,” he shared.
“It’s great. If I get in foul trouble, they step up, and if they get in foul trouble, I step up. This is what this team is all about. That’s why we got a good chemistry,” continued Rhodes, who is providing 23.2 points and 11.2 boards for SMB.
Now that San Miguel aims to continue their unbeaten run in the Commissioner’s Cup, Rhodes is also making it a point to continue developing individually for him to provide much better in the next games.
“Every game, I got to learn something. This game, I’ll watch the tapes and watch the fouls I made. I got to watch that,” said Rhodes.
Surely, Rhodes will watch this tape over and over again.