Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero was seen wearing a protective boot when he called the shots in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup debut, Wednesday.
And he may have to put it on for a long while. The former cager turned mentor disclosed that he tore his left Achilles during a pickup game over the weekend, with a surgery scheduled around next week to have it repaired.
“Nagpapawis ako ng Sunday kasi lumalaki na ‘yung tiyan ko,” he quipped. “But the problem is, na-injure ako. So it needs surgery, next week siguro.
“I can manage naman to coach. But ‘yun nga lang, medyo ganito. Medyo hila-hila ko lang ‘yung paa ko. But talagang ganoon eh, nangyayari ‘yung mga aksidente, but hindi naman natin gusto,” he added.
It was a tough predicament for the 46-year-old, who said that he never suffered any major injury during his decade-long playing career.
“Ngayon lang. Kung kailan ako nag-retire at naging coach, saka ako na-injure. Swerte talaga,” he said. “It’s an Achilles tear, so medyo masakit.”
Victolero was dragging his injured feet, though he managed to lead his side to a 100-92 win over Terrafirma to start the conference on a high note.
He was even assisted by assistant coach Tonyboy Espinosa and import Nick Rakocevic as they made their way to the dugout after the postgame presser.
“I think wala naman. Hopefully,” he said. “After the surgery, according to Dr. [Raul] Canlas, it takes one to two days. I can walk, but naka-crutches ako.
“So, ‘yun lang. Siguro mga two weeks ‘yun na naka-boot ako, and then after that, I can start walking na,” added Victolero.
“Kaunting pasensiya lang.”
The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.