MAGNOLIA head coach Chito Victolero admits the absence of a legit post threat is hurting the Hotshots midway through the PBA Commissioner's Cup.
Already without leader Marc Pingris, the Hotshots suffered another blow when they lost former NCAA MVP Ian Sangalang to a wrist injury after four games this conference.
Sangalang, who averages 13 points and 5.5 rebounds this conference, injured his right wrist in their 81-79 win over Meralco last May 18 and is not expected to return until a few more weeks.
The Hotshots have lost their three assignments without him, and had to change imports twice during that stretch.
"Medyo talagang mabigat sa amin na walang post threat right now. Si Ian talaga at si Ping. I mean talagang hirap yung guards ko," Victolero admitted after their 103-99 loss to Alaska.
With a 3-4 record, the Hotshots are currently at seventh place with just one-and-a-half games separating them from 11th-running NLEX, which totes a 2-6 record.
Victolero needs to act fast if he wants to end this slump, especially with a daunting four-game schedule ahead pitting Magnolia against TNT Ka-Tropa, Barangay Ginebra, NLEX and San Miguel.
"I mean, we try to find ways. Hindi pa naman kami out, so we will try to find mga puwede naming gawin para kahit papano makuha namin next game."
They can start by addressing their free-throw shooting woes.
Magnolia ranks as the second worst team from the stripe this conference, making just 60 percent of their charities.
Justin Jackson shot just 3-13 from the line in a game where they lost by four. His predecessor, Curtis Kelly, shot just 3-14 in two games combined.
"We'll just try to on these next two days paano ma-improve yung free throws," said Victolero ahead of the Hotshots' match against the Ka-ropa on Wednesday.
"We will try to talk to Justin on how to improve his free throws."