INSTEAD of focusing on the uncertainty surrounding import Leon Rodgers, LA Tenorio emphasized the need for Barangay Ginebra to work together as the Gin Kings step up their playoff bid with four games left in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup elimination round schedule.
The Gin Kings are currently bunched in fifth to seventh spots with the Air21 Express and defending champion Alaska Aces in the standings.
But Ginebra has a chance to grab solo fifth spot with a win against Air21 on Wednesday when they tangle in the main game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
While it is natural for the spotlight to be almost fixed on Rodgers in the import-laced conference, Tenorio noted that Ginebra’s rough start to the mid-season conference has a lot to do with the team’s inconsistencies on defense.
“Yung umiskor kalaban namin ng more than 100 points (per game), hindi talaga puwede iyun kaya that’s something we need to improve on,” Tenorio told Spin.ph on Tuesday.
Tenorio, who averages more than 36 minutes of action this conference, said the Gin Kings will just have to play with the old “never-say-die” spirit, something that has long endeared the team to its legion of Ginebra fans.
“For me, it’s not how long you play in the game, but it’s about playing with pride,” said the 29-year-old “Tinyente.”
“Kasi, it’s just the job of the big guys to rebound, pero lahat ng mga players, dapat accountable.”
The 5-foot-9 Ginebra guard said the team’s on-and-off defense has contributed to the team’s three losses in the first five games, which he hopes will stop against the Express, a team that is determined to bounce back from a painful loss to the Meralco Bolts last Sunday.
“Para sa amin, it’s all about the players communicating saka magsama-sama. So bukas (Wednesday), kailangan talaga manalo. Magaling din ang import nila (Express) kaya tulungan uli dapat kami sa depensa,” added Tenorio, who is averaging 9.6 points, 6.2 assists and 5.4 rebounds this conference.