Header Ads Widget

Arvin Tolentino explains injury leading to surprise 'DNP' in NorthPort's do-or-die game vs Ginebra

Arvin Tolentino surprisingly sat out NorthPort's must-win game against Ginebra. PBA Images
By Ivan Saldajeno

PASIG--Arvin Tolentino was a surprise scratch from NorthPort's active roster in its do-or-die PBA Commissioner's Cup quarterfinal game against Ginebra on Friday night.

The streak-shooting winger was not just a DNP (did not play) for the game but also a DND (did not dress) as he was seen inside the PhilSports Arena in street clothes.

According to a courtside report in the A2Z broadcast of the game, Tolentino is suffering from a jumper's knee, medically called patellar tendinopathy, a usual injury among athletes which he confirmed after the game.

"Honestly, the whole conference, I was feeling it. During the Asian Games, I was already feeling it, but itong last game namin, di na nawala yung pain, 10 out of 10, so I had to go to the doctor. And yun na yung findings," Tolentino bared when he began feeling the pain.

The Batang Pier's last game before the quarterfinals also happened to be against the Gin Kings in their last elimination round game on Jan. 7, where Tolentino fired 27 points in a losing effort that shut down NorthPort's hopes of entering the playoffs with a twice-to-beat advantage.

Tolentino's absence even surprised Ginebra coach Tim Cone, who said their game plan defensively mainly focused on him.

"A lot of our game plan was based on him being there, and we were surprised he wasn't," Cone said.

"Without a doubt, Arvin's absence was huge for us. [He was a] really difficult void for [NorthPort] to fill, and you could see, coach Bonnie [Tan] was trying to put different guys out there trying to figure out who could fill that spot."

Tolentino's absence also raised eyebrows among skeptics, but he clarified that he would have played if the Batang Pier pushed their quarterfinal against the Gin Kings to sudden death.

"If mag-Game 2, makakalaro pa sana ako eh," Tolentino further said.

Due to San Miguel eliminating Rain Or Shine in the first game, the supposed rubber match between Ginebra and NorthPort would have been scheduled for Sunday night at the SM Mall of Asia Arena due to the league's accelerated schedule ruling.

However, the Gin Kings made sure the Batang Pier would not get a second chance and eliminated them, 106-93, putting an end to Tolentino's spectacular conference, in which he led the locals in scoring, in the process.

"Masaya naman dahil napasama doon sa top performers sa conference, but yun nga, we lost [yesterday], and di kami nakapasok sa semis. So balewala lang din lahat," said Tolentino, who really wanted to make it to the semifinals with NorthPort.

He then added that he would devote the mid-season break for rehabilitation.

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

Post a Comment