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    Battle of cellar-dwellers a must-win for ex-NorthPort coach Cardel

    Oct 3, 2018
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascano

    THE losses are piling up for Columbian Dyip, but the next game is one the team can’t afford to lose as far as coach Johnedel Cardel is concerned.

    The Dyip tangles with NorthPort Batang Pier on Saturday in a battle between the two remaining winless teams in the PBA Governors Cup. And it so happens that NorthPort is the former team of Dyip coach Johnedel Cardel.

    “It’s a big game for us, parehas kami talo ng NorthPort,” said Cardel after the Dyip went down to their seventh straight loss, 113-95, at the hands of Magnolia on Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

    Going to their weekend encounter, the Batang Pier are just half a game behind the Dyip at 0-6, and Cardel dreads the thought of losing to his former team.

    “Sabi ko sa mga boys kanina pagkatalo, baka puwede ninyo ibigay sa akin 'yung panalo sa Saturday kasi that’s my former team,” he said. “At least pinatawa ko sila.”

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      Cardel gave import Akeem Wright a specific order.

      “I told Akeem, that’s my team before. I was interim coach at NorthPort,” said Cardel, who reminded the import how he won his first and only game as coach of the Batang Pier, a 125-118 victory over Phoenix two years ago.

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      “But I’m 0-7 right now Akeem, so help me,” he recalled telling the import, who finished with 19 points, eight rebounds, and six assists in the loss against the Hotshots.

      Despite the winless spell, Cardel said the Dyip are looking at things positively.

      “All positive naman kami,” said the Columbian Dyip mentor. “Meron pa namang four games, hopefully I can win kahit isa or at most dalawa para naman matanggalan naman ako ng tinik. Ang hirap, e.

      “Parang hindi ko na alam paano ang manalo. Pero it’s okay, that’s part of the game.”

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      PHOTO: Jerome Ascano
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