Monday was not a good day for Calvin Abueva.
After leading for majority of the ball game, the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters squandered a 12-point lead in the third quarter and allowed the reigning champs San Miguel Beermen to get a commanding 2-0 advantage in their 2019 PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven semifinals series.
To make matters worse, ‘The Beast’ was left with a painful bruise on his face after figuring in a physical battle for the loose ball against SMB’s 6’8 bruiser Christian Standhardinger in the 6:10 mark of the second period. The Filipino-German forward was assessed with a disqualifying foul after replays showed he also inadvertently hit Abueva in the groin area during the scuffle.
Abueva shared a close-up image of the damage he took in an Instagram post.
“Sobrang sakit lang ng ulo ko ngayon grabe. Game yan may nasasaktan, may nanalo. Kaya ikaw talo ka, wag ka pikon. Bawi sa laro,” Abueva wrote in a separate Instagram story.
Abueva was one of the catalysts of Phoenix’s fiery start in Game 2, as his infectious energy on both ends of the floor certainly rubbed off on his teammates. His emphatic chase down rejection of fellow Kapampangan Arwind Santos with 7:26 left in the first was one of the best highlights of the entire contest.
But like the rest of his team, Abueva also fizzled in the fourth quarter. He finished with an all-around effort of 16 points (5-of-12 shooting) to go along with 10 boards, six assists, three steals, and two blocks. However, he also contributed seven of the Fuel Masters’ 22 turnovers and missed all three of his three-point attempts.
(Images from Calvin Abueva’s Instagram/@calvinabuevaofficial)