Nick Rakocevic silenced his doubters by posting monster numbers of 45 points and 25 rebounds in his very first PBA game as Magnolia repulsed Terrafirma, 100-92, Wednesday in the Season 47 Commissioner’s Cup at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The 24-year old Serbian, who last played for the Zhejiang Golden Bulls in China’s professional basketball league, scored 4 of his total output during a 9-0 closing run as the Hotshots zoomed to their first win of the conference while dealing the Dyip their second defeat and 18th consecutive overall.
Rakocevic also contributed 2 assists, 2 steals and 3 blocks in 41 minutes of action.
“Kita naman natin, eh,” said Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero of his prized import during the post-game presser. “He plays both ends of the floor, he contributes to our defensive schemes on offense.”
“He’s very aggressive. ‘Yung activity level niya, ‘yun ‘yung gusto namin sa kanya. We expect Nick to help us, especially ‘yung execution namin down the stretch. Naging maganda naman,” he added.
Jio Jalalon added 12 markers while Ian Sangalang finished with 10. Paul Lee and Jackson Corpuz both scored 9.
Lester Prosper paced the Dyip with 41 points and 19 boards while Juami Tionson added 19 markers.