MANILA, Philippines -- After playing a combined 16 minutes and 53 seconds in their first three games, Meralco guard Trevis Jackson got the opportunity to show what he can do against the Magnolia Hotshots.
Meralco coach Norman Black gave Jackson a chance as the Bolts trailed against the Hotshots, and Jackson responded with his best effort so far in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup.
He played nearly all of the fourth quarter and scored all 10 of his points in the crucial period. With Jackson waxing hot from beyond the arc, the Bolts overhauled a 10-point deficit, pushed Magnolia to overtime, and ending up winning, 109-104.
"I was looking at the statistics," Black said after the game, "And even though he (Jackson) hasn't played very many minutes, he has played quite well in the minutes that he's played."
Jackson played eight minutes and three seconds against Phoenix Super LPG, finishing with two rebounds, an assist, a steal, and a block. He was a DNP against Alaska, but logged eight minutes and 50 seconds against Barangay Ginebra where he scored six points and grabbed three rebounds.
With the Bolts struggling to deal with Magnolia's press, Black sent Jackson in the game to join Aaron Black and Chris Newsome in the backcourt. All three players were major factors in Meralco's eventual win, with Newsome in particular taking charge in overtime.
"Tonight, we seemed to be just, you know, floating around. We didn't really have any definition in our game," said Black. "I thought I would give him a chance to try to turn the game around."
"So bringing Trevis in really helped us a great deal, as far as ball pressure was concerned, not to mention he hit three straight shots in a row," he added.
Jackson played 13 minutes and 36 seconds in the game, and earned praise not just from his coach but from his other veteran teammates. Newsome, who earned Player of the Game honors, noted that Jackson "hit some really, really big shots" for them.
While Jackson is clearly making a case for more playing time, Black said they will continue to bring the guard along slowly. This is still only Jackson's second season in the PBA after being selected fifth overall in the 2018 PBA Rookie Draft.
"He's gonna be a good player," Black said of Jackson. "He's just like Aaron -- he's still a young guy. He's only 24 years old."
"So he's still learning the game, he's still learning the PBA. But I'm so happy for him that he was very productive tonight and he helped the team win," he added.