TNT coach Chot Reyes had one simple reminder for Troy Rosario heading into the 46th season of the PBA and the Philippine Cup.
Rosario doesn’t need to burden the pressure of being the next Ranidel de Ocampo, one of the renowned players of the franchise.
“Simple lang. I just told Troy in our team building pre-season training camp, sinabi ko kay Troy, ‘I don’t need you to be the next Ranidel de Ocampo. I need you to be the first Troy Rosario. Show me who Troy Rosario is,” said Reyes after the Tropang Giga edged the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters, 84-80, at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City Sunday night, Aug. 1.
“And I think that took a lot of weight off his shoulders. Sabi ko, ‘Maglaro ka lang. I don’t need you to be Ranidel. I need you to be Troy. I need the best Troy Rosario.”
And the 29-year-old power forward from Mandaluyong did not disappoint after posting 14 points and 10.67 rebounds in three straight undefeated games.
Rosario, who was also known for his long-range ability, did most of the damage this time against the Dyip inside the paint and scored eight of his 15 points on four-of-six shooting.
He also went one-of-two from beyond the arc to go with eight rebounds and an assist.
Aside from Reyes’ reminder, the former National University standout just finished his homework as what a student of the game should do.
“Fortunately, he’s responding so far [with] a couple of excellent games for him but ‘yon lang ang sinabi ko sa kanya,” added the veteran tactician, who is celebrating his 58th birthday.
Rosario, who was selected by TNT at No. 2 in 2015, is also leading the Tropang Giga in the offensive department trailed by Jayson Castro and Roger Pogoy with an average of 12.00 points apiece.
Meanwhile, de Ocampo was tapped by TNT as an assistant coach in June 2020 after hanging his jersey for good in April the same year.
He had served the franchise with a rich resume of being a six-time PBA champion, a two-time Finals Most Valuable Player, the 2014 Governor’s Cup Best Player of the Conference, and a nine-time PBA All-Star.