Lee dominates as rebranded Magnolia torches Alaska
Paul Lintag on Dec 20, 2017 09:28 PM
Paul Lee scored a cool 30 points on 78 percent shooting.
Paul Lee was the personification of the fire emoji Wednesday night.
The former national team member sizzled for rebranded Magnolia, making all but three of his shots from the field as the Hotshots took down the Alaska Aces, 108-95, to start the 2017-2018 PBA Philippine Cup at the San Juan Arena.
Lee exploded for 30 points on 78 percent shooting, anchoring the Hotshots' big run in the middle quarters to recover from an early 10-point deficit. He also added seven rebounds and six assists in just 24 minutes of play.
Finally healthy after a knee injury cut his season short in the previous Governors' Cup, Lee poured 19 points in the second and third quarters combined as the Hotshots erased an early 10-point deficit.
Magnolia peaked in the third, taking its largest lead of the game at 16 points, 87-71, before cruising in the fourth period.
"It was very hard to win the first game, lalong-lalo na yung simula ng season," head coach Chito Victolero said.
"I told my players that we need to match up with the aggressiveness and intensity of Alaska in order for us to win this game. Kailangan mas mataas ang will to win namin," he added.
Aside from Lee, Bam Gamalinda also had a productive day for the Hotshots, scoring 15 points while Ian Sangalang added 13 points and nine rebounds.
Calvin Abueva led the way for the Aces, scoring 20 to go along with 15 rebounds and five assists. Vic Manuel also had 20 points and rookie Jeron Teng dropped 16 on his PBA debut.
MAGNOLIA 108 - Lee 30, Gamalinda 15, Sangalang 13, Dela Rosa 10, Simon 9, Herndon 9, K. Pascual 9, Barroca 6, Melton 3, Ramos 2, Brondial 2.
ALASKA 95 - Abueva 20, Manuel 20, Teng 16, Casio 10, R. Pascual 7, Enciso 5, Exciminiano 5, Banchero 4, Thoss 3, J. Pascual 2, Cruz 2, Magat 1, Racal 0.
Quarters: 21-26, 57-47, 87-74, 108-95.
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