STILL reeling from the lost of sophomore star guard Paul Lee, Rain or Shine faces the prospect of missing another key player in Game Two of its PBA Governors Cup semifinals series against Petron on Wednesday.
The Elasto Painters are set to miss the services of big man JR Quinahan as the wide-bodied former University of the Visayas stalwart is bothered by a painful Achilles injury.
“May isang buwan na niyang injury 'yan. Dati nakukuha namin sa therapy at masahe. Ngayon kahit nakaupo siya masakit na,” disclosed Rain or Shine therapist JD Calinawan to Spin.ph.
Asked about his condition, the hulking forward with the sweet stroke from the outside could only shake his head in frustration.
“Sobrang nakakainis. Kasi nung eliminations nakikisama pa siya (injury). Ngayong playoffs na saka pa siya lumala,” said Quinahan, who briefly played in the Elasto Painters’ 83-91 loss to the boosters in the series opener Monday.
“Sobrang sakit niya. Gusto kong lumaro, pero may movement na hirap ako,” he added.
Quinahan will be the second Rain or Shine player to be sidelined by an injury in the semifinals after Lee, the former University of the East gunner who is out indefinitely after suffering a calf injury.
The absence of the burly 6-foot-6 Quinahan will be a big setback in Rain or Shine’s bid to defend its crown as the big man is supposed to be the designated stopper of Petron rookie center and fellow Cebuano June Mar Fajardo.
Coach Yeng Guiao admitted the big effect of Quinahan’s loss to the Elasto Painters, having been assigned to bang bodies with Fajardo and other Petron big men inside the lane.
“Malaking setback talaga `yung pagkawala niya. Lalo na ngayon ang lalaki ng kalaban namin. Kailangan talaga namin siya,” said Guiao.
But the multi-titled coach is unperturbed amidst the challenge that lies ahead.
“Minsan, masarap manalo nung overwhelming underdog ka atsaka alam mo na you faced the toughest challenge. Pero kami ganun pa rin, pipilitin naming ilaban kung ano lang ang mayroon kami,” he added.
Guiao stressed he’s been there and done that in this kind of situation, recalling his experience 12 years ago with Red Bull when the team beat a star-studded San Miguel squad during the 2001 Commissioner’s Cup minus top players Kerby Raymundo and Junthy Valenzuela.
“Nakalimutan yun eh. (laughed) Buti pinaalala niyo. Kaya I will try and recover that feeling again,” he said.