Dave Ildefonso has been a thorn on the side of Far Eastern University and head coach Olsen Racela in the UAAP 82 Men's Basketball Tournament.
Ildefonso posted per game counts of 23.5 points in 50 percent shooting to go along with 9.5 rebounds, an assist and a steal in National University's two triumphs over the Tamaraws in the eliminations.
And even though they have been at the wrong end of some of the second-year standout's strongest showings in the season, Tamaraws' mentor Olsen Racela has been nothing but impressed by the Bulldogs' top gun. "Ako, 'di ako naniniwalang napakabata pa ng laro niya. He's a mature player, he's not a sophomore anymore," he said.
He then continued, "He sees the game differently. He makes the right decisions sa loob ng court."
Of course, among all coaches, Racela would know just how effective Ildefonso is at guard. "He sees the whole floor really well and because of that, he makes the right decisions. Some players kasi, isa lang nakikita e and because of that, they make bad decisions," he shared.
He then continued, "Siya, he sees the floor really well - parang point guard na nga siya e. They just give him the ball and make him create."
And of course, among all coaches, Racela would know Ildefonso best of all - with the former being a godfather to the latter.
From here, Coach Olsen is only certain his godson's development would continue. "This is only his second year. Imagine kung anong magagawa pa niya in the years to come," he said.
While Ildefonso is grateful to have a Philippine basketball legend to help guide him, the latter said all credit should be on the former.
Asked if he shared a thing or two to his inaanak back then, Racela answered, "Hindi. Laro-laro lang mga yan nung maliit pa yan e. Iniwan ko na sa tayay yun."
He then continued, through chuckles, "I'd like to think na nakatulong ako sa galing niya, pero iba yung genes talaga ng Ildefonso eh."
Indeed, Coach Olsen said anything and everything Dave is is because of tatay Danny. "'Di kami nag-uusap about basketball because he already has a legendary dad to take care of that," he said.
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