TNT big man Poy Erram with coach Jojo Lastimosa. –PBA IMAGES

TNT big man Poy Erram with coach Jojo Lastimosa. –PBA IMAGES

MANILA, Philippines–Poy Erram has played for a total of just five games in the PBA Governors’ Cup, but the TNT big man insists that he is ready for the title series that will pit his crew against defending champion Barangay Ginebra.

“The coaches are telling me to just do the little things while I’m feeling my way back,” he said in Filipino on the heels of the Tropang Giga’s 107-92 Game 4 win over Meralco on Friday night at Smart Araneta Coliseum that sent them to the tournament finalé.

“I don’t need to rush it. I know I’ll be able to adapt. [And] the things I don’t really show up in the stats,” he added.

A vital cog in TNT’s gilded run in the 2021 Philippine Cup, Erram missed a significant chunk of the third conference due to a knee procedure. He rejoined the club only during the quarterfinal duel against Phoenix and is still far from his double-double-churning self.

“There’s not much need (for my) offense, because we have (Rondae Hollis-Jefferson), we have Mikey (Williams), and we have kuya Jayson,” he pointed out. “We have plenty of weapons.”

And while he is not rushing his return to form, Erram knows that he will have his work cut out for himself when Game 1 of the Finals gets going on Easter Sunday as he goes up against Christian Standhardinger, a frontrunner for the Best Player of the Conference plum.

But he finds solace in TNT’s showing as of late—especially on defense.

“Our coaches always emphasize that our team wasn’t built based on the individual’s defense,” Erram said.

“I know you can’t always rely on help (defense). That’s when you take pride in (your own capabilities). But I also know that whatever happens inside—for example, there’s a scramble (for the ball), I know that there’s someone who’s going to help. That’s the structure of our team. That’s our system.”

Whether this edition of TNT is built for another championship remains to be seen, but Erram knows the rest of the Tropang Giga has what it takes.

“We’re hungry, and we know our capabilities as a team and as individuals. As long as we work as a team, I know we’d get far,” he said.

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