Jun 12, 2022

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For the first time, Jericho Cruz played for the San Miguel Beermen last Friday. It was his first game against his former teammates NLEX.  Cruz tallied 10 points, four rebounds, and three assists in San Miguel’s 100-92 win. He signed a three-year deal with the said team after his Road Warriors contract expired last March. The former NLEX strength said he treated Friday as any other game, and his expectations he missed several practice sessions due to knee injury. However, it was weird seeing Cruz in a different uniform and, competing against his former team, the veteran guard got the better end of the match up. His three-point basket while teasing his former teammates, capped a solid game for the former Adamson stalwart since joining San Miguel Beermen as a free agent late last season.  “Kakantyawan ako ng mga teammates ko kapag hindi ko naishoot ‘yun. Ganu’n rin yung NLEX”, Cruz quoted. Cruz was supposed to sit out of the game because of the injury but he was prepared and ready to endure the pain.  “Hindi ko nga alam na maglalaro ako,” added Cruz. “Kasi galing ako sa injury. So sinabi ko lang sa mga PT (Physical Therapist), I’m ready to go. Kapag tinawag ako ni Coach, I’m ready to go. Kasi no’ong una ayaw nila ako pag laruin dahil sa knew injury ko, nagkatubig kasi siya. Pero sabi ko, ‘Coach kaya ko naman ‘yung pain.”  It was a perfect way to return to hard court and, against his former team, Cruz went business as usual.  Cruz was able to put one over his former team and he looks forward to facing them again in the future. They will remain friends off the court, but once they troop the floor of the coliseum and it is ready for the tip-top, the attitude changes right there and then Cruz’s competitive nature will only have one thing in-mind—and that is to beat the opposing crew.
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