SAN Mig star James Yap said he was left impressed after watching the reigning PBA Commissioner’s Cup champion Alaska Aces dismantle his team during their Easter Sunday game, 85-66 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Yap, along with import James Mays, Marc Pingris and rookie guard Justin Melton, sat out the team’s final game for the single round eliminations as coach Tim Cone opted to rest them in time for their first playoff game scheduled on Monday.
But what amazed Yap was the size and the physicality of the Aces.
“Malakas talaga ang Alaska, malalaki. So kung sila makakatapat namin kailangan paghandaan sila, so magandang laban ito kung Alaska man,” said Yap, who like Mays, has been battling through back spasms the past week.
However, Yap said he and the Mixers will be ready regardless of who they face in the playoffs.
“Basta kahit sino, kasi pagdating naman sa playoffs, iba na ang laro eh, so sino pa makatapat mo, iba na nilalaro nila,” he added.
On the other hand, the 6-8 Mays said it felt good to finally get the much-needed rest as he prepares himself physically and mentally for the playoffs, where the Mixers will either face the Aces or the Meralco Bolts in a best-of-three affair.
“It’s the first time I encountered this (back spasms) kind of thing. I tried to play through it, and it’s affecting my play, so coach wanted to give me rest,” said the former Clemson standout.
But the power-playing Mays said he’ll be ready come Monday after a lengthy rest, back treatment and stretching the past week.