ALEX Compton was running on just an hour of sleep when Spin.ph caught up with the Alaska coach after the Aces practice on Saturday afternoon at the Hoops Center in Mandaluyong.
The American tactician definitely stayed up all night, trying to figure out what went wrong and how they can recover from a 108-78 beating at the hands of San Miguel Beer in Game One of the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals on Friday night.
And he’s not complaining.
“It’s okay,” Compton said. “It’s part of the job this time of year.”
“I have doctor friends who sleep less on their ER shifts, so now I can relate to them better,” Compton, who also has a new-born daughter, Annika, to take care of, added with a smile.
Gracious enough to grant a short interview, Compton has had time to reflect on the blowout loss and now sounds more confident and defiant, definitely more than he was on Friday night.
“I really think that sometimes games like that aren’t truly indicative of yung lakas nila at yung hina namin,” Compton said. “Syempre malakas yung team nila, but at the same time – it’s not sa yabang – but I think magaling rin kami. We just had a bad game.”
“It wasn’t really how we had been playing for almost about a month,” he added. “I don’t know if we were due for a flat-line game, but we certainly had one.”
It was the Aces’ first loss since June 23 when they lost to GlobalPort, 117-104, in their last game of the regular season, but it was game where they benched import Romeo Travis the entire second half.
Their last loss fielding a complete lineup was back in June 2 when they bowed to NLEX, 113-102.
In the wake of the defeat that left them behind in the best-of-seven series, Compton made a few adjustments in a light practice ahead of Game Two on Sunday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
“There were certain tweaks, certain points of emphasis that, though minor in nature, if done well could be major in impact,” he bared without going into detail. “That’s what we’re hoping for.”
“But us coaches never think (preparation is) enough,” Compton added. “We need two years (to prepare) each game. But I expect our true selves to show up. It doesn’t mean we’ll win. It doesn’t mean we’ll lose, but I think it’ll be a much better game on our side.”
Tipoff is set at 5 p.m. with the Aces hoping to shoot better after making just 35 percent (29-of-82) of their shots in the opener of the best-of-seven series.
“Sa lakas ng San Miguel, you can play really well and still lose,” Compton said. “But if you play poorly, you’re sure not going to win. So we got to play really well if we’re going to have a chance in the series. I think we have a chance.”