ALASKA star Calvin Abueva played one of his worst games this season, but fired a warning after seeing the Aces steal Game Six from a fully loaded San Miguel Bee side on Sunday night.
Get ready for war.
Consistent in almost every game in the PBA Philippine Cup title playoffs, Abueva saw his numbers dramatically to five points and six rebounds as he fell into early foul trouble in Game Six.
Those numbers are in deep contrast to his 19-point, 10.6-rebound, 2.4-assists, 1.4-steals per game average in the first six games of the series.
'The Beast,' however, was quick to shrug off the bad performance, saying he is looking forward to atone after the Aces sent the finals to a deciding Game Seven with an 87-76 victory over the Beermen.
"Siguro bad news na 'yan dapat sa San Miguel, kasi kung sumabay pa ko sa scoring baka lalong tambak," said the enigmatic forward, a double-double machine for Alaska this season.
"Okay lang sa akin 'yun (di maganda laro ko). Basta panalo kami. Babawi ako sa Wednesday," added Abueva.
After committing three straight fouls in the first quarter, Abueva played just 15 minutes on Sunday - a big drop from his 28.2-minute average in the series - as he gave way to super-sub Vic Manuel.
The former NCAA MVP said the series will be won or lost on the defensive end.
"Kailangan talaga kami mag-step up sa depensa, kita mo nalimitahan namin ang big man nila, nakabawi kami," he said. "Mas magandang depensa ang dapat naming gawin next game, last na (game na) 'yun. Wala na kaming dapat gawin kundi ibuhos na."
But for Alaska head coach Alex Compton, the Game Six win proved that the team doesn't depend on just one player.
"I love Calvin and I am so glad he is on our team. But he knows and we never emphasized that he is the reason for our success, he is one of the reasons for our succeas. I am really proud of our other guys," he said.
"No coach will say that, 'This team is built on one guy,' I am just so glad the other players responded to our challenge," he added.
The former Manila Metro Stars top guard explained that he was forced to sit in Abueva as he expected the Beermen to attack the defense of the foul-saddled forward.
"He got three fouls so I had to sit him in the second (quarter), and then the other guys played so well so I said, 'Okay, we can rest him,'" said Compton.
And with the series down to just one final game, Compton sees Abueva's foul trouble as a blessing in disguise.
"He had his rest (today in the game), Calvin throws his body all over the court, so if there is a game where you can rest him where he doesn't have to take some elbows and some things that should be good for us," he added.
"I am sure he'll be much more energetic on Wednesday!"