A WINNING record midway into the ongoing Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner’s Cup by the Columbian Dyip may come as a surprise to many but not for the team which said the success it is enjoying right now is in line with its expectations.
Holding a 3-2 record at the halfway juncture of the midseason PBA tournament, the Dyip have already surpassed their 1-10 record in the previous conference, Philippine Cup, when they were still playing as the Kia Picanto, and are poised to go even further if they get to sustain their spirited showing.
“We’re just trying to keep it going. We are playing pretty well right now so we just want to build on what we have accomplished so far heading into the second half of the conference,” said Columbian guard RaShawn McCarthy in an interview with BusinessWorld following their most recent victory on May 9 against the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters.
“The chemistry of the team is getting better. Also the addition of Jerramy [King] and Andreas [Cahilig] has helped but mainly it is the chemistry on the court,” added Mr. McCarthy, who is averaging 16.2 points, seven assists, five rebounds and 2.2 steals in five games to date, in what is doing it for them in the Commissioner’s Cup.
He went on to say that they are not overwhelmed by what is in front of them and are instead more determined to prove their true worth.
“We are not at all overwhelmed by it (good start). Our expectations for ourselves are higher than what everybody has set for us. We are not surprised by it. What was surprising was we went 1-10 last conference,” Mr. McCarthy asserted.
For Columbian coach Ricky Dandan, what they have been experiencing is a product of a conscious effort to change their ways and shed the “whipping boys” reputation of the team.
But the coach, who took over for erstwhile bench tactician Chris Gavina midway in the last conference, was quick to say that their work is not yet done and that they have to continue improving themselves in every way possible.
“Of course we are happy with a 3-2 record heading into the All-Star weekend. We are going to enjoy it for now but we are going back to the salt mines so to speak as we are facing Magnolia in our next game,” said Mr. Dandan, referring to their matchup with the Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok on Wednesday, May 16, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Apart from Mr. McCarthy, other Columbian players making their presence felt in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup are import John Fields (36.5 points, 13.5 rebounds and a block), Mr. King (17.2 points) and Reden Celda (12.6 points). — Michael Angelo S. Murillo