UAAP: After leading Ateneo to the title, Ange Kouame had knee surgery
MANILA, Philippines – Ateneo Center Ange Kouame prepares to cutlery after leading the Blue Eagles back to the top of UAAP while competing due to injury.
“I’m going to have the surgery, the rest, I’ll leave it to God because only God has the answers… Because I’m going home tonight, this is going to hurt,” Kouame said after playing the game. played the final UAAP on Monday in front of all 21,814 fans at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“I could barely walk normally. It is part of it. I enjoy the process and I enjoy the game. I don’t see myself staying away from the game. Whatever is going to happen, will happen,” he added.
Kouame suffered a partial tear of the anterior cruciate ligament and strained the meniscus in his knee last June, missing the July and August periods of the 2023 Fiba World Cup Asia Qualifiers and the Fiba Asia Cup in Indonesia.
The 6-foot-10 center back was still back for the season, where he struggled in the knockout stages and played a handful of games in limited minutes.
In the Finals, Kouame settled himself with 19 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks to complete Ateneo’s comeback in the final to dethrone the University of the Philippines, 75-68.
Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin has revealed the Finals MVP, who averages 17.7 points, 11.0 rebounds and 3.0 blocks in the series, hasn’t really been in good form for the season. This is because he needs surgery as soon as possible and recovers for at least five months.
“Ange’s knees are a mess. His last MRI scan, took place around mid-season. I got it from our doctors, they said it’s not good but it’s ok. I still connect with people down in New Zealand. I sent the results of his MRI to the Tall Negro doctors, some of the most sophisticated doctors. They see some of the most horrifying injuries in sports,” Baldwin said. “The doctor asked me a question: Does this child play? And I said, yes, he was playing and then paused and he said: ‘That’s a tough boy.
The 25-year-old grandpa praises all of his teammates for making this season his best in the Philippines.
“Not about Ange Kouame. It’s about the whole team and especially when it comes to the substitutes. I missed a lot of training this season because of my knee. props for them to make us better. “We’re where we are because of them and I’m really grateful for such teammates,” Kouame said.
“It means a lot. It was the best thing I’ve ever had in my life. I am really happy about this.”
Although Kouame will need several months to get back into top form, Baldwin believes the future is bright for his MVP in the global arena.
“He will play well in the import position. We’ll have to try to find a way to help him in the future and maybe in Europe or maybe someone in Japan will think he’s good enough to play there. There is still a lot of work to be done in his offensive game. But he’s going to be a problem in 10-12 years,” Baldwin said.
Gilas Pilipinas’ boost ended his college career with three championships, a Plum MVP Finals, a Season MVP award, and a Mythology Team selection last May.
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