by Jonas Terrado
Veteran center Rafi Reavis appears to be showing no signs of slowing down with the way he has performed in Magnolia’s current run to the PBA Philippine Cup Finals.
The 41-year-old Reavis, currently in his 17th PBA campaign, was one of the reasons why the Hotshots took two of the first three games of the Finals with his rebounding prowess and timely offense.
Entering the series’ fourth game being played at presstime at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, Reavis was averaging 10.0 points and 10.0 rebounds highlighted by a 16-point, 15-rebound performance in Sunday’s 86-82 victory.
Reavis left an imprint in the Hotshots’ second win by having a hand in frustrating Beermen star June Mar Fajardo, who shot 4-of-11 from the field despite 17 points and 14 rebounds.
“It’s just respecting who he is,” Reavis said. “He’s a great player and we just have to try and do your best and live on the outcome. Maybe he had an off night, I don’t know.”
Reavis is seeking his 12th championship which will enhance his status as one of the winningest players in the league’s 44-year history.
Reavis won his first back in the 2002 All-Filipino Cup when Coca-Cola clinched the title over Alaska on Christmas Day helping the Tigers win another one in the 2003 Reinforced Conference.
He joined Barangay Ginebra in 2006 and won two championships in the 2007 Philippine Cup and 2008 Fiesta Conference before moving to the Purefoods franchise in 2009.
Reavis’ title victories with the team came in the 2010 Philippine Cup, 2012 Commissioner’s Cup, 2013 Governors’ Cup, the 2014 Grand Slam season and last season’s Governors’ Cup.
“Whenever you are in this situation you always want to win,” he said. “You’re not sure when you’ll be in this situation again so you want to make most of this opportunity and not look back and say ‘Sayang, I could have done this and I could have done that.’”
Reavis put himself in a position to add another trophy when he grabbed 20 rebounds in Magnolia’s Game 7 semifinal win over Rain or Shine.
He later said that his focus on eating the right food and a recovery regimen using cold water has been the secret to his longevity.
“Si Rafi nakikita ko talaga siya na disiplinado sa katawan at di ko makikita yan sa ibang player,” Mark Barroca said. “Kaya sa court sobrang agile niya sa edad niya dahil sa mga ginagawa niyang diet.”
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