MANILA, Philippines – Marc Pingris is coming off kidney stone removal surgery and is uncertain to see action in the PBA's Christmas Clasico on Monday, December 25. But if he would have it his way, of course, he would want to play.
"The Pinoy Sakuragi" had just been discharged from the hospital last week. He admitted the operation has taken him "back to zero," casting a shadow on his chances of providing the inside presence the Magnolia Hotshots will need against Barangay Ginebra.
"I'm not sure pa. 50-50. Kasi kailangan kong magpakundisyon pa (I still need to condition my body)," said Pingris.
The Hotshots missed the services of Pingris and Rafi Reavis in their season opener against the Alaska Aces but thanks to a rejuvenated Paul Lee, who is recovering from a knee injury, they went home with a 108-95 triumph.
However, against Ginebra, which will be featuring a gigantic frontcourt of Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar, Magnolia could use all the help it can get inside, and that includes Pingris.
"Kung ako lang, oo naman (gusto ko maglaro sa Clasico). Kilala 'nyo naman ako eh. Kahit ano'ng mangyari. Hindi ko alam. Bahala na kung may masakit, tapalan na lang siguro. Masarap maglaro eh," the veteran forward said.
(If it were only up to me, I would want to play. You all know me, no matter what happens. I don't know. I don't care if it still hurts, I'll probably just patch this up. It feels good when I'm playing.)
"I'm good naman. Medyo wala na 'yung sakit sa likod ko. Inaalala ko lang 'yung hangin ko. Kasi parang 10 days na yata ako 'di nakatakbo. 'Yun 'yung unti-untiin ko," he added.
(I'm good. The back pain is kind of gone. I just worry about my breathing since it's been 10 days that I haven't ran. That is one thing I will gradually do.)
The NLEX Road Warriors will face the GlobalPort Batang Pier at 3 pm before Magnolia clashes against Ginebra at 5:15 pm at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan. – Rappler.com
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.