Apr 15, 2024

Cone expects all eyes will now be on Cu

TIM Cone considers rookie Ralph Cu to be a marked man from here on especially in the light of the near triple-double he pulled off in Barangay Ginebra's win over Northport in the PBA Philippine Cup.

While Cone and the rest of the Kings knew how good the former De La Salle player is, it was against the Batang Pier that Cu unleashed his full potential behind a statline of 24 points, 10 rebounds, and nine assists in a 95-88 win at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium Sunday night.

Cu highlighted the special feat by going 6-of-11 from three-point range as a starter for the Kings.

"He just kind of announced himself to the league, so I'm sure the next time out, they'll gonna be more conscious of him," said Cone of his prized rookie.

"Triple double, I mean these are huge numbers for anybody."

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Cu admitted he's now aware he's just an assist shy of completing a triple double as he was locked in during the game especially when he helped carry the load for the Kings in the first half.

"He better not be aware," said Cone with a smile on his face. "I think he's at that point where he's been locked in to the game."

The Ginebra coach said he was not surprised the second round pick of the Kings would be playing this well late in the season.

He had seen him play during the pre-season On Tour and got a glimpse of him suiting up for Ginebra's 3x3 team.

"We did know a lot about him. And no one else knew him like we did," said the champion coach.

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"So is it a surprise that he's playing this well? Yeah, certainly. Yeah, that his playing this well. But we expect him to play well. He's not doing anything in the game that he doesn't do in practice. Put it that way."

Now, the rest of the league knows it.(RG)