|Topex Robinson said the Pirates found daylight in the latest issues about them. Nikki Collantes (file photo)|
By Ivan Saldajeno
MANILA--Lyceum has been on the hot seat during the National Collegiate Athletic Association men's basketball finals against San Beda.
Right on the eve of Game 1, the NCAA management committee slapped star winger CJ Perez with a one-game suspension for his failure to quickly inform the league about his Philippine Basketball Association Draft plans.
Then two nights after the Red Lions pounced the Pirates to go 1-0 up in the best-of-three series, the ManCom convened anew about possible sanctions to be slapped to Pirates mentor Topex Robinson and College of St. Benilde Blazers associate Charles Tiu about their sentiments on the Perez ban. The ManCom eventually gave Robinson the green light to coach the Pirates in Game 2 on Monday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay as it deferred his sanction to next season.
For Robinson, however, these circumstances further proved why Lyceum, the reigning Philippine Collegiate Champions League champ, is a force to reckon with.
"Throughout those adversities, nakita natin how these players really bonded together, even the whole team," said Robinson.
The bond will be tested in Game 2 as the Pirates will try to avert elimination and force a sudden-death showdown against the Lions at 3:30 p.m. Monday.
Good thing for Lyceum, Perez will finally become available for the game.
"We're happy to have CJ back.... He's raring to go," Robinson continued, even saying that Perez helped him in designing plays that can counter San Beda's schemes.
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