CHITO Victolero isn't stressing himself just yet on the prospects of a quarterfinal clash between Magnolia and Ginebra in the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup playoffs.
The soft-spoken mentor is keeping his focus on the Hotshots' final elimination game against NLEX on Wednesday.
"We need to focus first against NLEX to secure the No. 6 spot," he told Spin.ph on Tuesday.
Regardless of the result of its duel against NorthPort, Ginebra is already locked in as the No. 3 seed as it owns a superior quotient over TNT and San Miguel, both of which carry identical 7-4 win-loss slates.
Magnolia, on the other hand, holds an even 5-5 card and only needs to vanquish NLEX in its 4:30 p.m. battle to be the No. 6 seed in the playoffs.
Such scenario would see the fabled rivals square up in a best-of-three series in the quarterfinals.
The Hotshots won the last series between the two, besting the Gin Kings in the 2018 Governors' Cup semifinals, 3-1, but Ginebra posted a 97-93 squeaker over Magnolia in their eliminations clash last March 17 at Ynares Center in Antipolo.
That, however, is still far from Victolero's concerns.
"We need to win to secure the No. 6 spot first," he said.
"The NLEX game is very crucial for both teams. We need to match the effort and desire ng NLEX because I know they will come up very strong, and most importantly, yung execution namin defense."