All that the Alaska Aces needed to do Sunday evening was to take down the surging Blackwater Elite so that they could complete the playoff picture of the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
But they failed.
“I don’t think today was a case of we didn’t want it and they wanted it more.
“It was just they made shots and made good plays and down the stretch,” opined Alaska head coach Alex Compton.
“And they were a little more patient. I thought they played a little more mature on offense than us,” he added, as the Elite had six players finish in double figures, thanks to their 26 team assists.
Still, Alaska — who have absorbed its fifth consecutive loss Sunday evening — is not totally out yet.
The loss has assured the Aces of a playoff for the eighth and last spot of the quarterfinals, and their opponent could either be the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters or the Meralco Bolts.
Both Phoenix and Alaska are carrying identical 4-7 cards, and a playoff between them will take place should the Bolts lose to the already-qualified San Miguel Beermen this Wednesday.
But if it goes the other way around where Meralco (3-7) will stop San Miguel, then it would be a Bolts-Aces playoff.
This has been the second conference in a row that Alaska will have to go through a playoff — they were in the same situation in the 2019 Philippine Cup, where they beat NLEX Road Warriors.
Still, for Compton, chances are chances, no matter how small or big they are. And he’s going to take it.
“Apparently, we still have a sliver of a thread of hope and we’re gonna fight for that and as long as there’s life left, we’re gonna honor the game,” said the outspoken bench strategist.
“We got a chance. So it might be a small chance, it might not be a big chance, but you got a chance.”
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