BEING on the other side of history somehow had beneficial effects for Alaska.
Their back against the wall opposite Rain or Shine in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup finals, the Aces are now trying to draw strength from their very own experience as they bid to complete a similar comeback pulled off against them by the San Miguel Beermen just last conference.
So far, the proud franchise is halfway into achieving the amazing feat by winning back-to-back games in the title showdown after being down 0-3 earlier. Another victory in Game Six scheduled on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum, would forge a winner-take-all match for the mid-season championship on Friday.
Shooting guard RJ Jazul said forcing a Game Seven is definitely far from the minds of the Aces, whose approach in the best-of-seven series is to take it one game at a time.
But he did admit the team is definitely motivated by the trick the Beermen pulled off at their expense during the last Philippine Cup finals when they remarkably rallied from a 0-3 deficit to win the championship in what has become known as 'Beer-acle' in basketball lore.
Heartbreaking as it may be, Jazul said it’s the one thing that has kept the Aces going against the Elasto Painters.
“Kasi of all the teams na nakakaalam na may nakakabawi sa 0-3, siyempre dapat kami yun,” said the gunner out of Letran College. “We’ve been on the other side before.”
Jazul has been a consistent presence for the Aces in this finals, averaging 14.0 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 4.0 assists in the team’s Games Four and Five victories.
Psychologically, momentum could be building on Alaska’s side. Not to mention the Aces’ strong belief that the improbable could finally be done.
“Sana destiny, na kami naman ang makabawi ng record namin,” said Jazul. “Pero we’re not thinking ahead. Hindi namin iniisip yung (may) Game Seven.”
“Sa amin game by game. As a team, we just try to survive every game.”