Learning Curve: Allein Maliksi hopes to grow after bungling endgame play

Star Hotshots’ Allein Maliksi could have capped off the PBA Friday night doubleheader with another game-winning three but the determined Blackwater Elite had other things in mind.

Already on the verge of playing hero after his fearless go-ahead three, stars suddenly did not align for Maliksi as his last-ditch attempt was denied by Elite big man JP Erram.

The former UST Growling Tiger, though held his head high and looked forward on taking big shots next time.

“Siguro learning experience from me kasi first time ko rin naman binigyan ng play for taking the last shot, sana next time mag-grow ako as a leader ng team,” said Maliksi after the Hotshots fell to a 0-2 start in the Governors’ Cup.

Coming off a crucial steal, Maliksi pulled a hurried transition three-point basket with 14 seconds still remaining in the game, giving his team a 1-point cushion.

“Pag release ko alam ko nang shoshoot eh, bumawi rin ako sa bad shooting ko last game, so iniisip ko na lang bawi ako ngayon,” said the 6-foot-3 wingman, who topscored Star with 20 points.

With plenty of time left, he certainly knows it was a make-or-break attempt that can make head coach Jason Webb mad at him.

“Di ko alam, siguro nag-alangan, eh nashoot, ganun naman yun eh, kung sablay, bad shot talaga, pero kung nashoot, thankful na lang,” he said.

But it all went for naught, with Blackwater import Eric Dawson managing to buy a basket in the paint while big man JP Erram able to preserve their 2-point lead with a big block on Maliksi in the ensuing play.

Despite a bad start in the conference, Maliksi believes the most important thing right now for the Hotshots iters to keep on building their chemistry.

“Mas okay na nagrogrow kayo, kaysa dun sa sige nanalo kayo, pero hindi kayo nagrogrow as a player and yung chemistry ng team,” he said. – By Jason Mercene 

Follow this writer on Twitter: @JasonMercenePH

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