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Renaldo Balkman using loss to Aces as motivation for semis



Tiebreaker Times Renaldo Balkman using loss to Aces as motivation for semis Basketball News PBA  San Miguel Beermen Renaldo Balkman PBA Season 43 2018 PBA Commissioners Cup
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For Renaldo Balkman, his return to the PBA would be so much better if it will culminate with a championship.

Balkman has come close to that dream of his, as the Beermen will be marching on to the 2018 Commissioner’s Cup semifinals after sweeping long-time rivals TNT Katropa in their best-of-three quarterfinal series, Tuesday night.

The 33-year-old forward emerged as the hero in San Miguel’s 106-102 Game Two victory over the Texters, as he calmly sank all four of his free throws inside the final 45 seconds to break the 98-all deadlock and put the game away.

“Those guys got lot of fight, lot of will in the game. I’ll be in a foxhole with every guy here any day. Right now, we’re in a foxhole fighting going to the championship. That’s our goal,” said Balkman moments after the win.

“Like I told y’all from day one, it’s a blessing to come back here and play in the PBA. To win it will be an even better blessing for me,” he added.

The defending conference champions have forged a best-of-five semifinal duel with the Alaska Aces. And for Balkman, this will be the most opportune time to get back at the Milkmen, who finished the eliminations as the two-seed.

Balkman won’t forget what Alaska did back in May 19 in Dumaguete City. It had been his debut for San Miguel, but the Aces gave him a rude welcome, 103-105, no thanks to Vic Manuel’s running one-hander at the final buzzer.

“That was my first game,” the 6-foot-8 Balkman recalled. “I feel like we wasn’t really jelling well, but hey, you can’t win them all. Those kind of games coming up, the semifinals, it’s a must-win for us. The first one is key.

“We gotta practice the next few days. We’ve seen them ’bout a half a month ago and we’re seeing them again, that’s a good thing. That’s motivation.”

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