Scottie Thompson emerged a winner despite Barangay Ginebra’s ugly defeat to Star on Sunday.
Thompson proved why he was one of the most highly-touted rookies coming into this season as he picked up where he left off as the star player of University of Perpetual Help in the NCAA with a rousing PBA debut.
The Digos City native saw action for 16 minutes and 31 seconds and he made every minute of his playing time count with five points, three rebounds, six assists, two steals and only one turnover apart from orchestrating the Kings’ offense.
“Nung pinasok ako, ang nasa isip ko lang mag-go hard ako, magpapakita ako. Gusto ko lang bumaba yung lamang,” said the former NCAA MVP.
The 22-year-old played like a veteran but he admitted that he had rookie jitters during his time on the floor.
“Ang bilis ko ngang napagod kasi kinakabahan ko. Pero ginawa ko lang yung best ko. Yun lang talaga,” he said.
His teammates immediately took notice of his impact on the floor and the future that lies ahead of him.
“He’s good. He’s going to be solid in this league,” said Ginebra forward Joe Devance. “Those are just little glimpses of what he can do. He’s a thinking guard. He can read, make the plays. He can rebound, shoot, initiate the offense.”
“Scottie is a really good talent. He showed his potential tonight. He really knows how to play the game, so I think he won’t be having problems adjusting to this level,” said Greg Slaughter, who led the Kings with 28 points and 16 rebounds.
Even head coach Tim Cone has high praise for his fifth overall pick.
“He blew the house down. He was incredible. We saw that in practice, but he put it up together tonight. We only had him in practice for a week and he was phenomenal,” Cone marvelled.
That, though, was just the trailer for the kind of show Thompson is capable of putting up as he continues to learn and gain experience along the way.
“He’s perfect for the triangle,” said Devance, who was brought in by Cone in the offseason with his game a fit for the triangle offense. “I’m excited for him. I can’t wait for him to really learn our offense and our system. He’s going to be really good.”