MARC Pingris’ impending approach to the twilight of his colorful career may just have been delayed anew.
After re-injuring his foot during a private workout the team decided that Pingris would be left out of Magnolia’s lineup for the current PBA bubble in Clark.
“Iyung injury niya na-reinjure niya sa last individual skills niya,” Hotshots coach Chito Victolero told Malaya-Business Insight.
“Sabi ko sa kanya magpagaling muna siya in preparation for the next conference,” added Victolero. “Kasi nga kung mamadaliin niya ngayon medyo mahirap. Hindi siya makaka-focus dito sa bubble dahil nga may nararamdaman siya.”
With PJ Simon announcing his retirement late last month, Magnolia is left with just a 14-man rotation for the season resumption that starts this Sunday.
The slot of Pingris, who turns 39 next Friday, will be alternately filled up by Jackson Corpuz and rookie Aris Dionisio.
“Okay naman kami sa frontcourt, kasi nga nandiyan pa sina Ian Sangalang, Rafi Reavis and Kyle Pascual,” noted Victolero.
For now, Pingris would have to concentrate fully on his treatment, something he cannot if he stays with the Hotshots in Clark.
“Daily ‘yung rehab niya, tapos halos araw-araw din laro dito,” narrated Victolero.
“Binilang niya days kung kailan siya puwede siyang mag-ganito, mag-gan’yan. Plus the fact ‘yung timing pa kukuhanin niya and then rhythm. Wala siyang time for adjustments kasi gagawin mo dito game, preparation, game, preparation. Ganoon lang. So wala ka ng time dito for conditioning,” added Victolero.
“Talagang iniwanan siya. Nag-usap kami bago kami umalis. Nagkasundo kaming wala siya sa lineup.”
The recovery period for Pingris is expected to be much shorter this time than when he suffered a torn left ACL in the semifinals of the 2018 Philippine Cup. It took him 16 months to finally get back into action then.
The PBA is set to officially announce the schedule and lineups either today or tomorrow.
Aside from Pingris and Simon, also definitely out of the bubble are San Miguel Beer’s June Mar Fajardo (injury) and Matt Ganuelas-Rosser (opted out), NorthPort’s Robert Bolick (injury) and Alaska’s Sonny Thoss (opted out) and NLEX’s Larry Fonacier (opted out) and Cyrus Baguio (opted out).