The soft-spoken cager thrived amid the chaos.
The Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City was jampacked on Sunday. The pro-Barangay Ginebra San Miguel crowd was intimidating more than usual.
The Magnolia Hotshots were down by as much as 26 points in the first half.
An unforgettable Manila Clasico ending was there for the taking.
Well, it was Magnolia who took it.
Led by their talented import Tyler Bey, the Hotshots mounted an epic comeback and got the victory, 93-91. The 25-year-old reinforcement faced an acid test in his Manila Clasico debut, which he took as a positive and enjoyable experience.
“It was fun," said Bey after the game. "The crowd was going (crazy). We’re at the end of adversity, down 26 (points). All I could really say is it was fun.”
As the 2020 NBA Draft’s 36th overall pick continued to talk about his squad’s impressive victory, which improved Magnolia’s record in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at 4-0, he mentioned one quality that allowed them to pull off the improbable win.
“We came back, we did our job. Like coach (Chito Victolero) said, we’re disciplined. We were tested (but) it was just fun,” stressed Bey.
The former Dallas Maverick posted 31 points, including three momentum-shifting slams and four clutch free throws. He also had 10 rebounds and five steals.
According to Bey, Magnolia’s late explosion had something to do with accountability as well.
ALSO READ: Magnolia signs athletic, defensive-minded Tyler Bey for Commissioner's Cup, Chito Victolero approves
The Hotshots are on the right path, going for their fifth win in a row. But it won’t come easy as they’re set to face another tough team in the NLEX Road Warriors on December 1.
Bey will likely think of it as another fun game though.