SAN Mig coach Tim Cone is bracing for a big Rain or Shine payback as the two teams clash for the first time in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup a month after their heated All-Filipino Cup Finals encounter won by the Mixers.
Cone says the Elasto Painters will definitely be looking at getting back on them in the 5:15 p.m. game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in the wake of the Mixers’ 4-2 series romp during the Philippine Cup title series.
“I tell you, Rain or Shine, they have a couple of things going on for them because surely, they'll be gunning after us especially after we beat them in the (Philippine Cup) Finals,” Cone related to Spin.ph.
At the same time, the San Mig coach said the Elasto Painters are also looking to bounce back after losing to San Miguel Beer in their last outing, 112-107, that left them with a 1-2 record in the short elimination round format.
“They are coming from that loss to San Miguel, so they have a lot of reasons why they don't want to go down 1-3 with another loss,” explained the San Mig mentor.
“We expect them to play with a sense of early desperation against us.”
Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao expects his team to play with a little bit of urgency after throwing away what appeared to be a won game against the Beermen.
The Elasto Painters managed to crawl back from a 16-point third quarter hole to grab a three-point lead on import Alex McLean's three-point shot with four minutes left in the game.
But Rain or Shine uncharacteristically turned the ball over several times in the dying minutes, allowing San Miguel to get back into the game and snatch away the victory.
Despite the loss, Guiao remains optimistic in Rain or Shine’s playoffs chances even if the team only has six games left in the eliminations.
“I guess it's also good that as long you don't get eliminated, you have a chance to win this conference,” said Guiao.
“If we cannot win early, I hope we can win late and still make the semis and the playoffs. Iyun lang naman maganda sa format, you can be a late bloomer this conference.”