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Don Trollano predicts bright future for this batch of Rain or Shine

Don Trollano marveled at the progress he’s seeing from Rain or Shine after being tested in the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup semifinals on Friday.

The reigning conference champions needed some luck in pulling off the 101-98 Game 1 win, making the seasoned winger all the more impressed with the same team they actually mauled to open their title defense bid two months ago.

“Knowing Coach Yeng [Guiao], hard-working lahat ‘yun eh,” he told Tiebreaker Times moments after the match at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay. “I know na kahit malamangan sila, they will keep going.”

A series generally perceived as David-versus-Goliath, Elasto Painters head coach Yeng Guiao vowed that his charges would try their best to give the perennial contenders a hard time, and they showed as much in the best-of-7 opener.

After a slow start that saw them trail 19-9 early, the crew went toe-to-toe in the succeeding quarters, even taking the lead multiple times in the third canto behind the hot shooting of Beau Belga from beyond the arc.

SMB would regain control not long after, but by no means felt any comfort whatsoever as they got challenged all the way to the dying seconds.

The squad only heaved a sigh of relief when Andrei Caracut missed the potential game-tying triple with exactly four seconds left to play.

It was a totally different ball game compared to their first meeting of the tilt back on March 15, where San Miguel erupted for 67 points in the middle quarters on the way to scoring the 109-97 rout for a strong start to their conference.

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2016-PBA-Governors-Cup-Rain-or-Shine-vs-San-Miguel-Don-Trollano Don Trollano predicts bright future for this batch of Rain or Shine Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports newsThat loss was Rain or Shine’s fourth in as many games back then but that proved to be the start of a magical run for the crew. They went on to win six of their last seven games of the elimination round to reach the quarters.

Now they’re in their first semis since the 2019 Commissioner’s Cup and Trollano is hardly surprised, for he knows that the brand of basketball of the present-day Elasto Painters is the reason behind the major turnaround.

“Alam naman namin, ang Rain or Shine running team ‘to e,” said the former Rain or Shine cog. “‘Pag may opportunity tatakbo sila kahit 20 seconds pa ang natitira sa shot clock, titira at titira knowing Coach Yeng.”

Having witnessed that kind of growth makes Trollano look forward to what the future holds for this youth-laden unit of Guiao.

“Actually, ang ganda eh. Biruin mo, sino lang ‘yung veteran sa kanila? Si Beau Belga, ‘di ba,” said the 32-year-old, who was part of the last Rain or Shine team that won a PBA title by conquering the 2016 Commissioner’s Cup.

“Give them maybe mga two, three more years, ‘di natin alam ‘di ba? Maganda ‘yung progress, especially puro bata sila eh. Meron naman silang good veterans, naga-guide naman nina Beau. Two to three more years.”

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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