Purefoods has yet to recover from the injury suffered by Ian Sangalang who will be out six to eight months due to an ACL tear injury when more bad news struck the squad on Sunday night.
James Yap, the resident star forward of the team, was on suited up and ready to see action when he complained during the warm up that he was feeling pain on his right calf muscle.
“Gusto ko sana i-try ko sa mismong laro. So nung sinabi ni Nic (Ocampo), yung PT namin na gusto kong ilaro, sinabihan ako ni Coach (Tim) na huwag ko nang pilitin,” Yap told a small group of sportswriters right after the Hotshots lost their game against the San Miguel Beermen.
Cone said he doesn’t want Yap to aggravate the injury he suffered during Saturday’s practice.
“It was really my decision. He still really wanted to try it out. My feeling was, it’s still too early the season. We can’t afford to go out there and make it worse and suddenly lose him for four to six weeks,” said Cone. “I decided to hold him out.”
Yap has had a series of injuries over the past few years, including a nagging back injury and and elbow injury.
But there’s good news for Purefoods – Marc Pingris, the team’s inspirational leader – has just rejoined the team’s practice.
“Ping has rejoined the practice, but he’s been off for three weeks and he’s not in game shape,” added Cone. “He wanted to play, too, and I said no.”
The hardworking Gilas Pilipinas team member said his main concern now is to get himself in shape as quickly as possible.
“Gusto kong makatulong sa team. Gusto ko pagbalik ko nasa kundisyon ako,” added Pingris.