JOHN Holland knows the pressure has gotten even bigger with San Miguel now backed against the wall and hanging on for dear life.
But like a true warrior, Holland said the Beermen will have to play the cards dealt them.
“It’s a harder road now, but we still have enough talent to do it. I’m still confident in us,” declared the soft-spoken import after San Miguel was denied of a Top 4 finish and a twice-to-beat advantage in the playoffs by a 114-109 loss to TnT Katropa.
It was a heartrending setback for the grand slam-seeking franchise, a second straight loss that comes in the midst of a tumult facing the team in the aftermath of a melee involving players and former import Dezmine Wells.
Holland, the former Boston Celtic and Cleveland Cavalier tapped to take over the place of the injured Wells, is obviously caught in the crossfire but said he’s ready to face the challenge.
“It’s a tough situation, but it is what it is,” said the import, who finished with a team-high 28 points in only his second game with San Miguel. “It’s the playoffs now, we just have to deal with all the adversity.”
By that, not only do the Beermen need to overcome their internal problem but also beat a formidable field starting with Barangay Ginebra, which holds a twice-to-beat advantage in their quarterfinal face-off.
“There’s always a lot of pressure to play. So we just have to keep pushing,” said Holland.
Championship experience and the ability to play under pressure should keep the Beermen going as they try to defy all odds.
“It’s clear that we have enough to get it done. We just have to do it and put together for one game, two games, one game at a time,” he said. “I still think that no matter what team we play, we have a good chance.
"I like us against anybody.”