THE warrior that he is, San Mig superstar James Yap is not about to yield the PBA Philippine Cup semifinals series against Rain or Shine despite staring at a deep 1-3 hole.
“Laban lang ng laban…Bawi na lang. Di pa tapos ito,” Yap said after emerging from the gloomy Mixers dugout following the team’s 74-83 loss in Game 4 Thursday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Even as frustration is obviously etched on his face, Yap said he is more determined to lead San Mig Coffee, which were outhustled and completely outplayed for the second straight game.
Despite nursing a right knee injury and bone spurs on his ankle, the 6-foot-2 Yap played for 42 minutes and finished with 20 points, three rebounds, two assists, and three steals – an all-around effort that was not enough to save the day for the Mixers.
Four San Mig Coffee players logged 29 minutes or more for the last two games, hinting fatigue may be possibly setting in for the team.
“Iyan ang di ko alam (longer minutes on key players). Diskarte iyan ni coach eh,” said the former two-time league MVP.
“Pero walang pagod pagod dito sa semis. Ang hirap makarating dito. Pinaghirapan namin ito, so kahit talo kami, bawi uli next time.”
The Mixers have also been in this similar situation during the Governors Cup Finals last season opposite the Elasto Painters.
Then carrying the name B-Meg, the boys of coach Tim Cone managed to win Games 5 and 6 to force a sudden death match.
But the Llamados lost steam in the decisive Game 7, allowing the Elasto Painters to win their first ever league championship.