Somewhere, somehow, an injury-ravaged Rain or Shine side manages to pull off one victory after the other this season, thanks to the leadership of Paul Lee.
The six-foot combo guard out of the University of the East has been taking the scoring cudgels for a Rain or Shine squad that has yet to play with a complete roster in the ongoing PBA Philippine Cup.
Lee scored 10 of his team’s last 15 points in a daring fourth-quarter, take-over-job, snatching Rain or Shine from the jaws of defeat via a heart-stopping 95-93 victory over a fighting NLEX team last Tuesday.
The 25-year-old Rain or Shine superstar, then banged in 18 points, while adding a key assist to Jonathan Uyloan, who drained a huge triple late in the game to hold off defending champion Purefoods Star’s endgame rally, 83-74 last Sunday.
Lee’s gutsy performance made him the hands-down choice for the Accel-PBA Player of the Week for the period of Nov. 24-30, beating fellow Gilas mainstay and San Miguel Beer star center June Mar Fajardo.
Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao expressed complete confidence on his prized guard every time Lee has the ball come crunch time.
“Paul will also know how to make the decision, kapag dinikitan siya (on defense), drive and kick lang naman sa kanya yun eh, but (when he takes the crucial attempt) whether he makes it or not, as long as he takes a good shot, we’ll be happy,” said Guiao, who has been largely credited for the stellar play of the former PBA Rookie of the Year.
The “Lee-thal Weapon” easily lived up to his moniker after averaging 22.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists that enabled the team to win its fifth straight game in the season-opening conference.
More importantly, the win kept Rain or Shine’s chance for one of the two automatic semifinal spots alive after booking its seventh win in nine starts. (RD)
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