PAUL Desiderio used as motivation a low point in his young PBA career to carry out his best game as a pro.
Believing he has something to prove against NLEX, Desiderio came through with a memorable performance for Blackwater in last year's Governors Cup.
Desiderio waxed hot and engaged the Road Warriors in a shootout at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Sports Complex in Laguna where the former University of the Philippines star can't seem to miss a shot.
The pride of Liloan, Cebu scored a career-high 24 points and torched NLEX behind a 6-of-8 shooting from three-point range to register the best game of his rookie season. Too bad, the Elite lost, 115-109.
Nonetheless, Desiderio considered it as the highlight so far of his pro stint as he recalled it in the recent Kamustahan of the PBA.
"Yun kasi yung team na nag-draft sa iyo, so kumbaga yung motivation mo lalong tataas," he said.
Desiderio was initially picked by NLEX at no. 6 in the first round of the 2018 rookie draft, but was traded eventually to Blackwater in a three-team deal centering around big man Poy Erram just before the 2019 season got underway.
That game against the Road Warriors somehow allowed Desiderio to finally unload what he's been feeling all along. Now everything is water under the bridge.
Somehow, that career-game also gave Desiderio the chance to help build his confidence moving forward.
"Doon nag-build yung confidence ko," he said.(RG)