RAIN or Shine’s imposing start in the PBA Philippine Cup would mean nothing if it doesn’t translate into something big.
Not that Beau Belga doesn’t appreciate the fact the team has now wrested the solo lead from Phoenix after dealing the previously unbeaten Fuel Masters their first loss on Sunday, 98-94, in overtime at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
It’s just that the real goal is to make it deeper into the playoffs, and more so, make a serious run at the championship.
“Title lang sa eliminations yung 6-1 (record). Useless yun, at yung top seed kung hindi ka aabot ng malayo sa conference na ito,” said the burly center, who had an all-around game of 16 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists in the Elasto Painters’ fourth win in a row.
“So yun ang pinaka-challenge sa amin. We still need to work hard just like kung ano yung ginagawa namin sa games namin.”
The game against Phoenix was Rain or Shine’s fourth in 10 days, with another one coming up Wednesday against Magnolia.
Good thing, the Elasto Painters have been winning, according to Belga.
“Yun ang kagandahan nun, kahit sunud-sunod yung laro, naipapanalo namin,” said the veteran center.
Playing almost every other day has already taking its toll on the Elasto Painters, said Belga, who is nursing cough and colds the past few days.
And it helps that some of Rain or Shine’s young brigade have been stepping up for the team such as Rey Nambatac and Kris Rosales.
Nambatac had his second straight game in double figures for the Elasto Painters with 10 points, while Rosales shared scoring honors with Belga with 16 points, including 2-of-3 from three-point range.
“Yun ang kagandahan sa team namin. Hindi mo alam kung sino yung iiskor ngayon, hindi mo alam sino yung mag-step up. Good thing every game day may mga bagito na nag-i-step-up sa laro. So hopefully, sa mga susunod naming games, yung iba naman,” he said.