AFTER watching Blackwater falter late in its first three games in its maiden season in the PBA, Barangay Ginebra coach Jeffrey Cariaso believes the expansion franchise is due for a win soon.
Yet, the soft-spoken coach isn't about to allow the Elite to earn their first win at the expense of the Kings.
“Absolutely, they (Elite) are due for a win. But I need to make sure it’s not against us. We need to make sure not to give them any life,” said Cariaso heading to Ginebra’s Philippine Cup match against Blackwater on Tuesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Manpower-wise, Ginebra (2-1) holds a superior advantage over Blackwater (0-3), which it faces in the scheduled main game set at 7 p.m.
The Kings are definitely itching to regain their bearings following a humiliating 97-81 defeat at the hands of newcomer NLEX last week.
Against Blackwater, not lost on Cariaso is the good mixture of veteran and young players in the Elite’s roster, a fact which he feels makes them a dangerous team to play against.
“They have a good combination of veterans and young players, all hard-nosed players on both ends,” said Cariaso. “I have much respect for coach Leo (Isaac), and I’m sure he will get his guys ready.”
On the other hand, Isaac felt that more than the physical preparation the team had the past days, the key to keeping up with Ginebra is mental aspect, aware the Kings’ roster is one of the deepest in the league today.
“Kami naman, we will give it our best shot, kasi hindi naman porket Ginebra ang kalaban, talo na kami. Basta ang importante, ang mindset namin is lalaban kami,” said Isaac, who has Ginebra’s ‘never-say-die’ spirit running in his veins having been a former Ginebra player himself in the late 80s and early 90s, and won two championships with the league’s most popular ballclub.
Isaac felt the Elite have improved each game despite its woeful 0-3 start, although they will just have to be patient as they learn the ropes of playing in the pro league.
“Kung kakampihan actually kami ng swerte, 3-0 sana kami, pero part naman talaga ito (losses) ng pagiging expansion team,” he said.