It was a perfect embodiment of the never-say-die spirit. At any point in the series, or before it even started, Joe Devance could have opted to shut his conference down and proceed to heal a plantar fasciitis injury in his left foot.
Instead, Devance plodded on. And when the sacrifice amounted to nothing, when all it gave him was a front-row view to San Miguel Beer’s third straight celebration of a PBA Philippine Cup triumph, Devance wasn’t left with any drop of regret.
“It was all worth it. Just to battle with these guys, they played their hearts out. I don’t regret anything,” he said.
Devance went full warrior mode for the Gin Kings in their first no-tomorrow match in the series. He wound up with 20 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists in Game 5 on Sunday. Before the game and at halftime, he took pain shots so he could get his mind off his foot and on trying to keep the Kings alive.
Unfortunately, those efforts went down the drain as San Miguel claimed its third straight Philippine Cup title with a 91-85 conquest.
“We faced a tough San Miguel team. They played great the whole conference. They got way too many weapons. We tried our best, but we just couldn’t get the wins,” he said.
Devance now turns his attention to his upcoming surgery, as he is set to miss a couple of months for his side in the upcoming Commissioner’s Cup.
“I’m just gonna rest, probably get surgery. So I may be out for a few months. I did what I could and I don’t know what to say. I feel kind of bad right now, but San Miguel played great and that’s a great team. Let’s see what we can do next conference,” he said. “Hopefully my foot won’t be affected later in life. But I’ll worry about that if it happens.”