Red Robins’ Enriquez sends statement that he’s the reigning MVP

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 16, 2016 07:58 PM
Robins’ Enriquez sends statement that he’s the reigning MVP
REMEMBER ME: Mike Enriquez finally showed up in MVP form after 16 games in the tournament.

Now nearing the end of the elimination round in the NCAA 92 Men’s Basketball Tournament, the name of the reigning and defending MVP has only been mentioned a few times, if at all.

That’s because Mike Enriquez, the top individual player for Season 91, has just played seven games. When he has been on the floor, he also hasn’t produced eye-popping numbers with averages of six points, 3.9 rebounds, and four assists.

The third-year player missed all but one of the matchups in the first round due to a fractured left foot. He sustained the injury during a tuneup game last June and, of course, needed some time to get back in shape and in form.

That was even more true after the frustration Enriquez felt when he learned that the injury will force him to the sidelines for what was essentially half of the follow up to his MVP year. “Nung unang call ng (physical therapist) namin na sabing out ako ng first round, napaiyak ako ng konti,” he said.

He then continued, “Alam ko namang kailangan kong makatulong sa team.”

Following a 28-point, six-rebound, five-assist, and two-steal performance on Friday, however, the league’s premiere do-it-all player may very well be back in shape and back in form. And as he put it, it may have very well come out of necessity as he said, “Pwedeng blessing in disguise.”

Enriquez was referring to the absence of three key cogs for Malayan Institute of Technology in Romuel Junsay who was suspended and Sherwin Concepcion and Jasper Salenga who were injured. “Siyempre, kelangan nang mag-step up kasi malaki yung kawalan nung tatlo na yun sa amin,” he said.

On a more personal note, however, the reigning MVP admitted that he was also determined to remind just about everybody that he’s, well, the reigning MVP. “Yun yung gusto kong iparating sa kanila – na MVP ako,” he expressed.

He then continued, “Yun din laging pinu-push sa akin ng mga coach na MVP ka, kelangan ka namin.”

However, Enriquez was quick to clear that he’s not out for back-to-back MVPs, or any other individual honor, for that matter. “Napatunayan ko na yung individual. Ang kailangan kong patunayan, yung sa team naman,” he said.

He also added, “Tama na yung individual, para sa lahat naman.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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