Belo reveals ITB injury slowing him down late in Philippine Cup

File photo

By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--In a rare moment on Friday night, Mac Belo wore knee pads in Blackwater's PBA Philippine Cup wildcard playoff against Rain Or Shine.

As he revealed to some sportswriters, however, the wingman is actually enduring some pain on his knee.

"Yes, [may injury ako] sa ITB (iliotibial band)," Belo bared.

The ITB is a ligament that stretches from the hip to the shin through the outside of the thigh. The injury on the ITB, more popularly known as the ITB Syndrome, is common among athletes.

Belo, however, further revealed that the tightness and the inflammation on his ITB, which are the symptoms of the said injury, has been the case about him since his days with FEU but got aggravated recently.

"Matagal na ito. College days ko pa ito na problem, pero di naman ganun kalala. Lumala lang siya after ng game namin sa Ginebra, so ayun, nagre-recover pa," he continued.

As it turned out, the six-foot-four forward's hectic schedule last year, from the UAAP to the D-League and even to the FIBA Asia Challenge, where he was part of the Gilas lineup, also affected the health of his knee.

"Before pa ng draft, wala na akong pahinga, kaya medyo bugbog yung legs," Belo, who is also part of the Gilas pool for the SEABA Championship, added.

However, he insisted that the ITB injury is not the reason behind his sluggish performance in the Elite's loss to the Elasto Painters that knocked them out of quarterfinal contention despite a promising start.

"Mababa yung percentage ko. Di ko nasho-shoot yung ibang tira ko," said Belo, who only made six points on 2-of-12 shooting.

With the conference over for Blackwater, Belo will devote the break for stocking up to prevent the injury from recurring.

"Kailangan talaga ng strengthening," he said.

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