GERALD Anderson became the first highly-popular celebrity baller to join the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL), but it was Xian Lim who got the first opportunity to play in a regular game televised nationwide.
On Thursday night, he got an opportunity of a lifetime playing for the Mandaluyong El Tigre-Dataland, scoring six points and grabbing six rebounds in his team’s 98-55 triumph over the lowly Pasig Pirates-Gameville Thursday night at the Blue Eagle Gym.
Lim saw action for only 15 minutes but contributed in a big way for the El Tigre, who picked up their second straight win — including the latest one, where they posted the league’s most lopsided victory ever.
His impressive game caught the fancy of head coach Mac Cuan.
“In fairness to him, he’s been really practicing well,” Cuan told FOX Sports Philippines. “He’s a tough kid, as you can see, he doesn’t back down.”
For Lim, getting himself involved with Mandaluyong entails a lot of discipline. Already a busy person as a movie and television personality, the celebrity baller is more challenged dealing with his schedule.
“Mas naging disiplinado ako. Kasi as a player of Mandaluyong, when they say 7 ang ensayo, dapat alas siyete andun ka. No excuses. I think that’s good for me as well,” added Lim.
Not only did Lim had to be more disciplined, but he also had to elevate his game to a higher level.
“Definitely. Iba ang competition dito dahil magagaling yung mga player,” he added.
Lim has already played his first game, but he also looks forward facing his fellow celebrity baller, Anderson, who missed the first few games of his team, Marikina, due to a hamstring injury.
“Pinag-uusapan nga naming (ni Gerald) kung kalian kami maglalaro eh,” added Lim. “But I look forward playing against him.”
Photo: Ralph Salcedo