Manila Bulletin

Pingris return ruled out


The Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok ruled out veteran forward Marc Pingris for the rest of the PBA Philippine Cup after sustaining a knee injury late in the team's 88-87 loss to the NLEX Road Warriors in Saturday's opener of their bestof-seven semifinal series at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Hotshots coach Chito Victolero confirmed Pingris' absence after undergoing an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) test at Medical City, the severity of the injury still to be determined by well-known sports physician Dr. Raul Canlas.

Victolero is hoping that the injury won't be as severe as many feared.

“Our hope is strained MCL, but even if it's MCL, out na siya for the series kasi 3-4 weeks din recovery period, kagaya ng nangyari kay Paul (Lee) and Jio (Jalalon),” said Victolero, mentioning the same injuries suffered by Lee and Jalalon in the past.

Magnolia team governor Rene Pardo later confirmed that Pingris would be out, even if the Hotshots wound up advancing to the finals of the season-opening conference.

A strained MCL, or the Medial Collateral Ligament, would only require a player therapy and strengthen­ing. But a tear would require surgery to repair the injury.

A similar procedure would also be done to an injured knee if it were the ACL, or Anterior Cruciate Ligament, but a longer recovery period is required for a player to fully get back on active play.

Pingris injured his left knee while driving to the basket late in the fourth frame against NLEX center JR Quinahan with Magnolia ahead, 76-73. NLEX eventually won, 88-87, for a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven affair.

The 6-foot-6 forward crumbled to the floor in pain while holding his knee and was wheeled out to the dugout where he was comforted by Gilas Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes before being brought to the hospital.

The 35-year-old Pingris, who finished with five points, seven rebounds and three assists, missed the Commission­er’s Cup and several games of the Governors’ Cup last season due to a back injury.

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 ??  ?? Marc Pingris grimaces in pain after sustaining a knee injury Saturday against NLEX. (Rio Deluvio)
Marc Pingris grimaces in pain after sustaining a knee injury Saturday against NLEX. (Rio Deluvio)

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