ANTIPOLO CITY – For LA Tenorio, Ginebra’s 95-78 win over Globalport Friday night is just the beginning of the tougher battles ahead in the PBA Philippine Cup playoffs.
The Kings face yet another hurdle in Talk `N Text Tropang Texters whom they face in the knockout quarterfinal phase Tuesday for the right to advance in the semifinals.
And the Tropang Texters are definitely a big stumbling block in the team’s bid to end a long title drought that now stretches to six years.
“Playing against Talk ‘N Text kasi, ibang iba na sila compared sa first time na nakalaban namin sila, especially at knockout game na iyun sa Tuesday,” said Tenorio shortly after the team’s clinical 17-point rout of the Batang Pier at the Ynares Center here.
The Kings clobbered the Tropang Texters, 101-81, in the team’s first and only meeting during the season-opener at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
But Tenorio believes the Tropang Texters have since improved by leaps and bounds under new coach Jong Uichico since that 20-point blowout.
“We really have to double our efforts, especially defensively since they are very talented, very precise sa lahat ng ginagawa nila,” explained the 30-year-old Ginebra guard.
In the event the Kings manage to survive the knockout playoff style against the Tropang Texters, Tenorio feels they have a much better chance to reach the Finals.
“Sa mga ganung klaseng team, dun kami nahihirapan talaga eh. Pero malagpasan lang namin ang talk ‘N Text, di naman sa sinasabing we’ll go all the way (to the Finals), pero mas maganda na ang chance,at mas maganda yung magiging countenance ng team going to the semis,” he added.