FOR LA Tenorio, it’s a matter of Ginebra getting its confidence back and start winning again after suffering one of the most embarrassing losses of the season in the PBA Governors Cup.
And picking up the pieces following their loss to expansion team Blackwater had to start in faraway Dubai where the Kings battle winless Rain or Shine on Friday.
“We just have to get back on track at magkaroon lang ng winning streak. And we have to start in Dubai,” Tenorio told Spin.ph in a serious tone.
The Kings fell at the bottom half of the standings after they bowed to the Elite on Saturday in Dipolog City, 83-77, for a 1-3 (win-loss) record.
They Said It!
“ I’m still very positive na may mangyayaring maganda sa team kahit kulang kulang kami." LA Tenorio
Part of their struggle is the absence of injured big men Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar, along with high-flying wingman Chris Ellis, all of whom didn’t suit up in the team’s first four games in the season-ending meet.
Slaughter and Ellis (out for the rest of the season) will continue to miss the game against Rain or Shine, although Aguilar joined the team when it flew to the Middle East country on Tuesday morning in the hope of playing for the Kings.
Although the Elasto Painters have yet to win in two games, Tenorio still considers the team of coach Yeng Guiao as a very dangerous opponent.
“It’s just another hard game for us for sure against Rain or Shine at kailangan lang maging ready kami. Kailangan makuha naming manalo.”
At the same time, the 30-year-old Tenorio appealed to Ginebra fans for patience as the Kings go through a transition period under new coach Frankie Lim.
“I’m sure even si coach nag-a-adjust pa sa team. And then with the injuries we have. Eh kasi, nung break, buong training camp namin, wala namang injury, till biglaan nung ma-injure si Greg, tapos si Japeth,” he said.
“But I’m still very positive na may mangyayaring maganda sa team kahit kulang kulang kami.”
This developed as Lim noted that winning becomes difficult especially if a team gives up a combined 18 rebounds per game in the absence of its big men as in the case of Ginebra.
Lim noted the Kings’ three remaining big men in Dorian Pena, Rodney Brondial, and Dave Marcelo are just averaging a combined 10.15 rebounds in the team’s first four games, while American import Orlando Johnson is averaging 13.5 boards per outing, more than the combined average of the three Ginebra local big men.
But to be fair to Pena and Co., Lim said the effort of Pena and Co. is good enough to tide Ginebra over as it awaits the return of Aguilar and Slaughter.
“They (Pena and Co.) are trying to do their part. Si Dorian naman, he’s not a starter. He subs for Greg. Same for Dave, di rin siya starter, saka si Brondial. So itong ginagamit ko ngayon, puro mga subs,” he explained.
“Pero sa tina-trabaho nila, puwede na rin kesa wala kasi di naman namin plano na maglaro sila ng 30 minutes.”