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Former No. 1 pick Noy Baclao continues to thrive ‘in a job nobody wants’

Former No. 1 pick Noy Baclao continues to thrive ‘in a job nobody wants’

ON the eighth anniversary of being picked first overall in the PBA draft, Noy Baclao came out with a huge performance.

Though he didn’t really turn into a superstar, Baclao continues to have a respectable professional career — with flashes of brilliance such as Wednesday night’s when he helped Alaska stop Phoenix in the PBA Governors’ Cup.

Baclao came out with his best scoring output in an Alaska uniform by scoring 15 points while also playing good defense on high scoring import Eugene Phelps who still finished with 27 points although needing 26 shots to get there.

“Sa tinatakbo ng career ko, may ups and downs din talaga. Just continue, keep moving forward just keep doing kung ano kailangan gawin,” said Baclao. “Kasi sa team na to bibigyan ka talaga ng kumpiyansa. Tulad kanina, libre, tira lang, walang masama.”

Baclao’s efforts were not lost on Alaska coach Alex Compton who sang him praises after the match.

“I thought Noy was fantastic. I mean, Noy’s got the job that no player wants: ‘Sige sayo na yung import. OK lang, 40 points a game lang naman yan eh. Mahina.’ Ay teka muna,” Compton said.

“Si Noy had the hardest, most thankless job and I’m so happy for him he’s Player of the Game because I think he deserves it.”

With Calvin Abueva now on the opposing bench, Baclao is likely to get more chances to prove his worth as a solid rotation guy.

For the pride of Bacolod, he’ll just continue to do whatever he can to make the most out of the opportunities.

“Every game, parang ready lahat. Knowing na kasi wala na si Calvin, kailangan lahat mag-step up. Kasi ang laki ng nawala samin eh, kasi sa totoo lang double-double machine si Calvin,” Baclao said.

“Calvin is Calvin talaga kahit anong sabihin. Kaya kailangan namin mag-step up, kailangan namin mapunan yung mga kakulangan.”

Whatever happens, Baclao says he always will be grateful for the chance to play in this level.

“Nakakatuwa na nakaabot ako ng eight years na hindi masyadong nagamit. As of now siguro kailangan ko pa magpursige, may family na rin ako.”