ARWIND Santos shot down claims that this version of the PBA Philippine Cup Finals has been “scripted” to reach a Game Seven that came to fruition on Wednesday when San Miguel Beer scored a 98-86 Game Six win over Magnolia to force a deciding game.
Fans have suggested that the best-of-seven title series between sister teams has been rigged to go the distance for the benefit of the league.
Players and officials from both camps have already denied those accusations before the start of the series, but fans continued to fan the flames especially with the battle indeed reaching the limit.
Still, Santos insisted that its nonsense.
“Scripted? Hindi siguro,” the SMB star told SPIN.ph after Game Six. “Hindi natin maiiwasan yung mga taong ganyan, nag-iisip kasi sila, sabi nila same company, hindi ganun eh. Hindi naman sila yung nasa posisyon namin. Hindi nila nakikita yung pang-araw-araw namin, kung ano ginagawa namin.”
“Ni hindi nga kami nag-uusap ng mga yun,” he added, referring to the Hotshots. “Tingnan niyo sa game, pagktapos nun, dito lang kami nag-uusap pagka-lumabas ng dugout. Hindi nga kami nagbabatian eh, kasi pareho naming mahal yung trabaho namin.”
Santos contributed eight points on 3-of-12 shooting, seven rebounds, two blocks, and one assist, against two turnovers in almost 33 minutes as a starter.
The former league MVP scored all his output in the payoff period to help the Beermen get enough breathing room to preserve the victory in the face of the Hotshots’ late rally.
Santos’ getting entangled with Rafi Reavis at one point in Game Six – and all other commotions – are proof that there’s no love lost between these sister teams.
“Pareho kaming masasaktan pagka natalo kami, kung hindi namin nakuha yung championship. Kaya walang bigayan dito, malabo yun,” Santos said. “Hindi yan parang candy or makikikain ka lang or ililibre mo. Pwede yun eh, pero ito hindi eh. Pamilya namin nakataya dito.”