For the second straight conference, Yeng Guiao and his embattled Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, have their backs against the wall.
They are on the brink of elimination following Alaska’s come from behind 93-88 win that put the Aces ahead 3-2 in their best-of-seven semifinals series and within striking distance of a championship berth. It was a similar situation the Elasto Painters faced last conference when they were trailing 2-1 in the best-of-five semifinals series until that unfortunate slip by JVee Casio changed the complexion of the series.
This time, though, Guiao believes they cannot rely on good breaks anymore.
“Breaks could either work for you or against you, we cannot rely on the other team’s bad breaks. We have to make our own break,” said Guiao.
The fiery mentor will try to rally his team back in hopes of bringing the Elasto Painters to the finals for the third time in the last four conferences.
“We will go all out to bring this to a Game 7; if it will go to a Game 7, I think we can pull through. Importante yung Game 6 muna. Kapag nairaos namin yung Game 6, it would be an interesting situation,” added Guiao.
But to get a good chance of setting up a winner-take-all Game 7, the multi-titled mentor believes the referees should also play a key role – by calling the game in a more consistent way. Guiao felt his team didn’t get the fair share of the calls late in Game 6, allowing the Aces to wipe out their 19-point lead and eventually take the win.
“We’re hoping the league also looks at the calls in the second half, we felt that ina-allow yung physical game sa amin, but kami naman hindi kami maka-physical sa other side. It’s the situation also in Game 3, yun din ang nangyari,” said Guiao.
In Game 3, Rain or Shine was called for a total of 37 fouls and awarded Alaska 44 free throws.
“So, we’re just concerned about the consistency of the calls, allowing the same kind and degree of physical game for both teams. Kung puwede sa kanila dapat puwede rin sa amin. Pero yung game kanina (Game 5) lalo na yung second half nung nagra-rally na sila, nag-iba na yung balance ng tawagan. I hope the league looks at that.”