FROM the looks of it, Game Four of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup between Ginebra and Talk `N Text may be very hard to replicate.
But both the Gin Kings and Tropang Texters guaranteed more intense, physical action when they take to the floor for their winner-take-all showdown for a Finals berth on Sunday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
Game time is at 6:15 p.m.
“We have to play 25 seconds of defense,” said Ginebra coach Alfrancis Chua. “We have to play hard because they (Tropang Texters) are very aggressive.”
Talk `N Text's aggressive stance added color to the Kings’ 104-101 win Friday night that tied the best-of-five series at 2-2.
Import Vernon Macklin was at the receiving end of the Tropang Texters’ physical plays courtesy of guard Ryan Reyes and big man Ranidel de Ocampo.
“Sana lang makita ng mga referees `yung mga cheap shots,” said Chua.
The fiery Ginebra mentor claimed Reyes punched Macklin twice during the game which officials failed to call.
He also insisted De Ocampo hit the 6-foot-10 import on the groin, which caused the former Florida Gator to retaliate and push the Talk `N Text in return.
Both Reyes and De Ocampo later denied to Spin.ph they intentionally hurt the Ginebra import.
“Sabi ko sa kanya (Macklin) composure. But he said, 'Coach, he can’t hit my nut.’ Binayagan niya eh, Kita `yung foul. Di baleng pisikalan lang, wala namang sakitan,” Chua said.
Talk `N Text coach Norman Black said he expects the final game of the series to be more physical as they'll try to match up with the fired-up Kings.
"Based on Game Four, I'm expecting a very physical and competitive game. We just want to come out with energy and match their physicality. If we do that, we should have a good shot at winning. Balance on offense and controlling Macklin in the paint will be keys for us," said Black.
Reyes meantime, explained that in a playoff basketball, there is no point in giving up easy lay-ups or dunks.
“It’s gonna be an all-out war because both teams want to win. And what I mean in all-out war is everyone is going to give out their best. It’s no-tomorrow for both of us,” said Reyes, one of coach Norman Black’s defensive specialists.
The Kings are looking to advance to the Finals for the first time in two years, or since the 2011 Commissioner’s Cup when they lost the championship to the Tropang Texters themselves.
Talk `N Text on the other hand, is seeking a second straight Finals appearance after winning the Philippine Cup title last January with a sweep of Rain or Shine.