ANOTHER survival game for B-Meg, another chance at a closer for Rain or Shine.
The Elasto Painters and Llamados go at it again on Friday night at the Araneta Coliseum in Game Six of the PBA Governors Cup Finals, which coach Tim Cone hopes to extend to a deciding seventh game, and Yeng Guiao believes is bound to be their date with destiny.
Rain or Shine still leads the best-of-seven series, 2-3, but a 91-81 win by B-Meg in Game Five gave Cone and the Llamados the belief that they can get back into the championship groove by taking things one game at a time.
“It’s just about what’s in front of us,” Cone said after B-Meg averted a Rain or Shine celebration on Wednesday and stayed alive for a shot at a second straight conference title.
“Our focus is no longer winning the championship but winning the next game. We got to narrow our focus."
Game time is at 6:45 p.m.
The Llamados are trying to become the first team in more than two decades to come back from a 1-3 Finals deficit. Ginebra achieved the rare feat in 1991 when the crowd favorites dug out of the huge hole to stun Shell.
And for the Llamados to come a step closer to duplicating the feat, they need to draw the same brilliant performance from superstar James Yap, the former two-time MVP who played like a man possessed in Game Five and sizzled for 30 points on 13-of-23 shooting.
For Yap, who brandished every weapon in his arsenal, the huge adversity staring his team is the last thing on his mind.
“Para sa akin, enjoy ko na lang ‘tong Finals na ‘to,” Yap said. “Mahirap pag masyado ka marami iniisip.”
The Llamados also needed the steady, all-around game of import Marcus Blakely and the aggressiveness of big man Yancy de Ocampo underneath for them to tie the series and force a winner-take-all showdown.
De Ocampo, who had 14 points and 14 rebounds the last time, readily held the fort in the absence of Marc Pingris, who is out with a severe neck pain and could be 50-50 for Game Six.
The 6-foot-9 De Ocampo led the Llamados in outrebounding the Painters, 67-49, figures that remain as Guiao’s main concern.
“We just have to work on rebounding, boxing out better,” Guiao said.
The Elasto Painters, who still have two chances of clinching their first title in franchise history, also have to work on getting better shot selections for them to have a chance in the game.
“We’ve encountered problems on our shot selection. I felt we could’ve taken better shots,” said Guiao, whose squad shot just 36.4 percent from the field and 62.5 percent from the foul line.