MACMAC Cardona has a new challenge, aside from helping Talk N Text’s title quest in the PBA Fiesta Conference.

This one’s more personal as he tries to break the seeming hex that seems to follow each Accel-PBA Press Corps Player of the Week citation that comes his way.

“Kailangan mas lalo pang galingan at huwag isiping jinx nga,” Cardona said.

The setting is there as he is once again bestowed the honor by the scribes who took full note of how he ratcheted his game up at least a notch for the period April 5 to 11, helping TNT notch its first back-to-back wins in the tournament and land a place in the upper half of the field.

There is simply no getting around to the fact as Cardona averaged 21.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 2.5 steals in TNT’s’ 100-92 and 102-89 victories over Alaska and Sta. Lucia Realty, respectively.

Those numbers earned for Cardona the scribes’ nod over teammate Ranidel de Ocampo, Derby Ace’s Nino Canaleta and San Miguel Beer’s Alex Cabagnot.

“Patay!” was how TNT coach Chot Reyes initially reacted upon learning of Cardona’s first POTW citation for the tournament and his fourth for the season.

Reyes could not be faulted, for the citation seems like a hex that prevented the man nicknamed “Captain Hook” from submitting better than his conference-best 19.6 ppg average in the Philippine Cup.

Now, Cardona has jacked his overall Fiesta norms to 17 points, placing him third among the locals behind Coke’s Gary David (20.5) and De Ocampo (19.8).

And, for Reyes, Cardona has another task aside from helping TNT claim the crown it has never won.

“It’s a good challenge for him to break the spell,” Reyes offered.

Cardona aims to do just that.

“Kailangan mas lalo pang galingan, huwag akong mag-relax at laruin lang ang dapat kong ilaro,” he stated. (NC)