MANILA –Many Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) fans were shocked when the teams passed up on Roi Sumang in the first two rounds of the 2015 PBA Draft despite several mock drafts had him as a projected first rounder.
It seemed like the slip to the third round was justified when he struggled in his rookie season with a guard-laden GlobalPort lineup featuring Terrence Romeo and Stanley Pringle and his current squad, Blackwater.
However, Coach Leo Isaac did not give up on the former explosive UE quarterback and kept him with the Elite, and that gamble paid off on Sunday night when he tallied a career-high 19 points, 17 in the second half, with one rebound, two assists, and three steals for them in a 103-100 squeaker over the Alaska Aces.
Sumang, however, said that he was just sticking to Isaac’s game plan.
“Kung ano ang gustong mangyari ni Coach, yun lang yung magagawa namin. Maganda naman ang kinalabasan,” Sumang, who was named the Accel-PBA Press Corps Player of the Week on Monday, specifically said.
Also, he said he kept another reminder from Isaac.
“Sabi ni Coach sa dugout pa lang, ‘Huwag niyong isipin kung sino yung makakalaban niyo. Gawin niyo lang yung mgadapat niyong gawin sa court,'” Sumang bared, referring to his scoring showdown with Jvee Casio, whose teammate Calvin Abueva was also considered for the citation.
The other nominees for the Player of the Week were Romeo, Mahindra’s Philip Paniamogan, San Miguel’s Junemar Fajardo, Ginebra’s Joe Devance, and Star’s Allein Maliksi and Ian Sangalang.