RAIN or Shine tries to drop the ax on San Mig Coffee when it goes for the series-clincher in their PBA Philippine Cup semifinals showdown on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Game Five of the best-of-seven series set at 6:45 p.m. marks the first of the Elasto Painters' three attempts at making the Finals of an all-Filipino conference for the very first time.
The Painters held the same 3-1 lead over the Painters in the last Governors Cup finals but ended up losing Games Five and Six to San Mig (then B-Meg) and being dragged to a deciding seventh game.
“If we become complacent, if we let out guards down, that (San Mig comeback) can happen. But we will make sure we'll be ready mentally. Di na namin patatagalin ito,” said coach Yeng Guiao after the Painters' 83-74 win on Thursday night.
Guiao noted how Rain or Shine obviously has the fresh legs between the two teams, considering that James Yap, Peter June Simon, Joe Devance, and Marc Pingris are logging more than 32 minutes for San Mig in the last three games of the series.
“We're fresher and we're sharper at this point. They are forced to play their key players longer minutes,” added Guiao.
With their backs against the wall, Devance said the Mixers will have to play their A-game and play as a unit if they hope to live longer in the series.
“We always have a chance. The only question is, are we willing to fight and play together? We need to play together because there is no tomorrow,” the 6-foot-7 Fil-Am forward, who is averaging 13 points and six rebounds in the series, said.
The Mixers will also have to play more aggressive especially in rebounding after losing the battle of the boards the last two games.