Cone feels that Tenorio Game 3 blunder to serve Kings well as they take another shot at closing out the Road Warriors

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LA Tenorio readily owns up to the Game 3 loss and vows to redeem self. —PBA IMAGES

LA Tenorio readily owns up to the Game 3 loss and vows to redeem self. —PBA IMAGES

Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone was quick to back up LA Tenorio after his point guard’s costly Game 3 miscue that allowed NLEX to escape being swept in their PBA Governors’ Cup Final Four series.

“That’s happened to me so many times—when I thought we were up by two and find out we were down three or up three, whatever,” Cone said. “It’s so easy to lose [sight of the situation] especially after a free throw, because your mind is already thinking it’s two points then they forget that the free throw goes in.”

Cone was referring to Tenorio opting for a layup instead of going for a triple to hopefully forge extension, as the Road Warriors were up by three then after import Cameron Clark intercepted a Tenorio pass and completed a three-point play with 7.3 seconds remaining.

Cone has no doubt that his old hand will get over the episode.

And from where he sits, Cone feels that it’s a good thing going into the critical fourth game.

“LA has won so many games for us. He’s gonna get by on this one, that’s not a problem,” Cone said. “The key for him is just moving on—put it away and move on. That’s what we all gotta do. We gotta put it away and move on.”

Tenorio, meanwhile, was scratching his head as soon as he saw reporters waiting for him outside the Kings’ dugout late Sunday night.

Getting over it

He was quick to admit to those errors in judgment and chalk another one up to experience.

“I wasn’t aware [of the score]. I was disoriented by my turnover,” said Tenorio, shaking his head in disbelief. “This is very unusual of me. I was bothered so much by that turnover where I passed to [Justin] Brownlee.”

Tenorio said it will take a bit of time for him to get over the blunder. But he also understands that it’s a process that he has to see through.

“Honestly, it’s going to be hard for me. It’s not going to be easy for me to let this incident go. But as one of the vets in the team, I’ll have to deal with this,” he said.

“I have to battle [through it]. I have to fight through it starting tomorrow at practice, and on Tuesday, and most especially on Wednesday,” he said. “And on Wednesday, I can’t be too eager at redeeming myself. I really have to battle.”

A proven winner, Tenorio said Sunday’s breakdown will test not only his but also Ginebra’s character moving forward.

“I’ve to show my teammates that it’s not the end of the day, the end of the world after what happened. We still have a chance on Wednesday to close out the series,” he said.

“It’s just so unfortunate. I could’ve hit a triple or made something to send the game to overtime. There was so much more that could’ve happened. But I made a mistake. That’s the way it is,” Tenorio added.

“That’s part of being a basketball player. You commit mistakes. You win some and you lose some.” INQ

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