PBA: Mo has no issues about being the seven-time MVP’s sidekick

Apr 4, 2024

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Ever observed Moala Tautuaa’s game having more energy again? Tautuaa, who is often overshadowed by San Miguel star June Mar Fajardo, has been contributing significantly to the Beermen’s play in the last several PBA All-Filipino Cup games.

The cause? After the altercation with Calvin Abueva and his wives off the floor, the 6-8 Fil-Tongan has been playing basketball with a lot of inspiration.

The San Miguel coaching staff’s assurances that he would contribute significantly, particularly given that Fajardo is not playing at his peak level of fitness, further awoke the “slumbering dragon” in him.

It turns out that the 2015 top choice has been putting up big numbers and providing many intangibles in San Miguel’s first three conference games.

Tautuaa is playing an average of 18.18 minutes per game, averaging 5.67 points, 5.67 rebounds, 1.33 assists, 1.33 steals, and almost a block to lessen the load on Fajardo’s “worn-out legs.” Tautuaa revealed that, in order to get ready for whatever lies ahead, he has been going through extra workouts and skill development three times a week. Tautuaa laughed heartily when asked if he does not even entertain the thought of facing Fajardo while playing for a different side in the future.

While June Mar Fajardo made his court debut on Wednesday following a calf injury sustained during last month’s PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals. 

In his 24 minutes and 57 seconds of action, Fajardo finished with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 blocks as San Miguel defeated Rain or Shine 109-97. Due to an injury, Fajardo was unable to play in the first round of the Fiba Asia Cup 2025 qualifiers against Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong. Despite being sidelined, the seven-time PBA MVP traveled to the away game against Hong Kong. According to Gallent, Fajardo’s playing time would be influenced by the performance of his backup, Mo Tautuaa. Tautuaa finished Friday’s game with seven points and six rebounds in 19 minutes of play.

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