After injury-plagued campaign, Thirdy hopes for another opportunity

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 09 2021 12:28 PM

After injury-plagued campaign, Thirdy hopes for another opportunity 1
Thirdy Ravena in action for San-En NeoPhoenix. B.LEAGUE photo.

MANILA, Philippines -- Thirdy Ravena expects to discuss his contract with the San-En NeoPhoenix this week, with the Filipino star hoping for one more chance to show what he is capable of following an injury-riddled debut season.

Ravena's arrival to the B.League side was widely hyped but he wound up playing just 18 games for the NeoPhoenix, thanks to an array of injuries as well as a bout with COVID-19.

He averaged 9.1 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.6 assists per game for San-En when he was available, but never quite got into a rhythm after a late arrival to the squad. The NeoPhoenix finished their B.League campaign with a 12-47 record last week.

"The talk of the players… will be on May 11," Ravena said when asked about his situation with the team.

"I think that goes for a lot of the teams 'cause usually, second week of May nagde-decide 'yung teams, 'yung management about the lineup and what's gonna happen for next season, so let's see," he added.

Ravena missed six games in December after testing positive for COVID-19. Shortly after he returned in January, he suffered a fractured finger that kept him out for nearly three months. His comeback in late March was short-lived as well, as he tweaked his left knee on April 14 against Ryukyu and sat out the rest of the season.

The former Ateneo star insists he has no regrets about how his first season with San-En unfolded, but he still endured plenty of frustrations as he couldn't play to his usual standards.

"There's always that… expectation from yourself na you know you could have done better," said Ravena. "I mean, you can say that every game, di ba, parang oh, I still could have done better even if you played really well."

"But in my situation, I was just frustrated nga na I was always just playing handicapped, quote unquote. I'm not trying to make excuses. I know that I played how I played and I'm not blaming that on anything. But it's really just the frustration of not being able to play in the shape that I wanted to play," he added.

Ravena says he is open to offers from other teams -- and even other leagues -- as he wants to keep gaining experience in the international basketball stage. 

Before signing with San-En last year, Ravena considered offers from Italy, New Zealand, and Australia.

"If I can still have a chance, have an offer, why not?" he said. "I mean, it's a great experience and I feel like I could definitely learn a lot more being on the court and not being sidelined you know, most of the season."

"I mean, why not, right? I guess we'll just have to see what will happen."

In the meantime, Ravena is looking to return to the Philippines and recharge after what has been a difficult year both on and off the court. He still has some events to attend as part of the NeoPhoenix, but he hopes to fly home by the end of the month.

"I'm gonna stay here for a couple more weeks then probably late May, probably May 29 is my target date to go back to the Philippines," said Ravena. "So yeah, uwi muna tayo. Magbabakasyon ako. I mean, I really feel like I need this. I really need to be back especially after our gruesome season."

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