Prodigal son CJ Perez has come home to Coach Topex Robinson
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jun 29, 2017 04:24 PM
IT FEELS SO GOOD. The long and deep partnership between head coach Topex Robinson and main man CJ Perez has LPU feeling all good.
This early, many are already penciling in CJ Perez as frontrunner for MVP.
For Lyceum of the Philippines University’s main man, however, the top individual honor is far and away from his mind.
“Kakabalik ko lang sa NCAA. Matagal din akong nawala rito so medyo nag-a-adjust ako ulit,” he said. “So kahit babalik lang ako, marami pa ring nagbago. Kaya yung MVP, darating na lang yan.”
First and foremost, Perez has to remind everybody about the talent that made him one of the brightest stars in collegiate basketball.
Of course, before he faded away in his two years in Ateneo de Manila University. “Yung pagka-down ko sa Ateneo, iniisip ko na lang na motivation ko yun. Siguro, magandang napunta na rin ako dun para ‘di lang puro up nangyayari sa akin, may down din,” he shared.
He then continued, “Ngayon, sinisikap ko na lang na umangat ulit.”
The good news is that the 23-year-old will have a familiar face guiding him all the way once again. “Sobrang laking tulong ni coach Topex (Robinson) kasi hindi siya tumutigil na i-motivate ako,” he said.
Indeed, Pirates’ surge in the upcoming season will be driven by the unwavering faith of shot-caller Topex Robinson on his returning star. “When CJ left Ateneo, I gave him an opportunity with us, pero ang sabi ko, ‘You can go to any team.’ He said he wanted to play for me,” the head coach recalled.
He then continued, “I said, ‘Are you sure? Because all of the collegiate teams are gonna get you and gonna offer you anything you want.’ But he committed to us and I appreciate the trust he gave to me.”
Robinson mentored Perez for two years back when they were both in San Sebastian College-Recoletos before they parted ways. The former set sail for Intramuros while the latter moved to Katipunan.
Now, the two have reunited and are only raring to lead LPU to the promised land. “Ganun ang nangyari, naging balikan lang ba ng tiwala. He trusts me and I trust him with all my heart,” Robinson expressed.
And thus far, the coach is seeing his prodigal son as nothing but a perfect fit for a Pirate crew hungry for the playoffs. As he put it, “The good thing about this team is that CJ is one of the best players in the league, but he’s always the same as the other guys.”
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