He had a relatively slow start to the Commissioner’s Cup finals, but Talk ‘N Text guard Jayson Castro is coming alive in a very big way.
After a five-point stinker in Game One and a 3-of-19 shooting performance in Game Three, Castro has raised his game considerably, especially in Game Six.
He did the heavy lifting for the Tropang Texters, particularly in the fourth quarter when he scored 14 of his team-high 25 points, and led his team to another win in a do-or-die game.
It’s almost hard to believe that he isn’t even 100 percent healthy.
Talk ‘N Text coach Chot Reyes revealed after their Game Two win that Castro had been scheduled for a procedure on his left ankle since last conference but “The Blur” has pushed through with some great performances in the series anyway. Castro starred with 23 points and five assists in that game, and followed it up with 25 and four in Game Six.
“The key for us is to have him on the floor for extended periods,” said Reyes. “If you would notice in the series, there are games where we really had to manage his minutes.”
Castro averaged just under 25 minutes per game in the first three games.
“But now it’s Game Seven, and we’ve put ourselves in a position where we can really unleash him now. We’re not going to be looking at his minutes anymore. We’re going to coach every minute as if it were the last,” Reyes added.
Castro agreed with the sentiments of his coach.
“All out na,” said Castro. “Wag na isipin yung injury. Mind over matter na lang.”
He certainly proved he was capable of that in the previous game.
“Kasi hindi ko iniisip eh. Siyempre gusto ko manalo,” he added.
But while Reyes believes Castro’s performance in Game Seven will be key, he knows it will take more than just a one-man show to beat a team like B-MEG.
“It’s important that he plays well but it’s equally important that others step up and give him support,” he said. “In Games Four and Six, Ranidel De Ocampo and Jimmy Alapag hit some shots, and the same for Larry Fonacier.”
“Even if Jayson plays well – in one game in this series, he played really well but he had no support and we lost that game.”
The coach was referring to Game Five where Castro scored 16 points, including three three-pointers, but was one of just three Texters scoring in double-figures. The team scored just 66 points in the loss.
The speedy guard, though, promised to leave it all on the floor in Game Seven.
“Basta try ko na lang give yung best ko sa court,” said Castro.
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