PLAYING coach Manny Pacquiao knows how tough a match his KIA Motors team is facing on Saturday against powerhouse Ginebra, so he decided a pep talk was in order.
But since the global boxing superstar is in General Santos City training for the title fight against Chris Algieri next month while his team trains in Manila, the 'Pacman' did the next best thing.
A long-distance motivational talk.
Kia team manager Eric Pineda said Pacquiao gave the Sorento a pep talk this week via speakerphone, reminding them that they had beaten Ginebra in a preseason game and can certainly do it again when the two teams square off in an out-of-town game on Saturday in Lucena City.
“Sinabi ni coach Manny sa mga bata na may pagasa pa tayo against Ginebra, saka pina-alala niya lang yung panalo namin nung preseason kahit na wala at that time si LA (Tenorio) and Japeth (Aguilar),” Pineda told Spin.ph after the team’s practice on Friday at Clover Leaf gym in Guadalupe, Makati.
"He did that through speakerphone," he added.
At the same time, Pineda said the eight-division world champion sees no reason why Kia can't repeat over Ginebra, even if the Gin Kings have since put their preseason struggles behind them to open the season with a smashing 101-81 win over Talk 'N Text on Sunday.
The KIA playing coach, Pineda said, also said the team needs to prove that its surprising 80-66 win over fellow expansion team Blackwater on opening day is no fluke.
“We did it before, coach Manny believes we can do it again, saka mahalaga lang dito, mapatunayan na hindi tsamba yung panalo namin last Sunday,” Pineda added.
Pacquiao is currently back in training in General Santos City with American trainer Freddie Roach as he prepares for his WBO welterweight title defense against Algieri on November 23 in Macau.
During this time, Pacquiao has also been absent from Congress but assured that he will return full-time to KIA after the Macau fight.