Alaska forward Calvin Abueva pointed to a family problem as the reason why he missed a game with the Aces.
That was also his reason why he was a no-show in some Gilas practices and why he changed his jersey No. 8 to 88.
“The past three weeks, sobrang lungkot ko sa nangyari sa family ko,” said the energetic Abueva.
“Kaya pinalitan ko yung number ko,” added the 29-year-old Abueva, who had a double-double effort of 21 points and 15 rebounds in Alaska’s 93-75 win against the Phoenix Fuel Masters in the PBA Philippine Cup last Wednesday at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City.
The win of Alaska stretched its streak to five games as it improve its record to 5-2, half-game behind defending champion San Miguel Beer and Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok – both with 5-1 cards.
Abueva missed Alaska’s game against Blackwater last Saturday, and he failed to attend the practice sessions of the national team that is preparing for the second window of FIBA Asia qualifier this month against Australia and Japan for the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China.
There were persistent rumors that one of his kids has leukemia, but Abueva and wife Sam – in a story by Spin.PH – clarified that all their children are healthy and not one of them is ill.
League observers speculate too that his marriage is on the rocks. Abueva did not mention anything about his marriage, but he is motivated to continue to improve his performance with the Aces.
“Nakuha ko yung motivation ko kung ano yung pinaghirapan ko the last three weeks. Nabuhay ako sa sarili ko na maging masaya. Masayang-masaya ako ngayon. Kinuha ko itong No. 88 para ang 2018 the best part of my life… kahit hindi na sa love life,” said Abueva.