Uichico hoping pre-Christmas break will give Mo Tautuaa enough time to be fit for playoffs
TnT coach Jong Uichico remained defiant after the loss to Ginebra. Dante Peralta

TALK ‘N Text coach Jong Uichico stuck to the positive, saying he's glad the Tropang Texters still have twice-to-beat advantage in the first phase of the quarterfinals despite losing to Barangay Ginebra on the final day of the elimination round of the PBA Philippine Cup.

The Texters’ 91-84 loss to the Gin Kings at the Mall of Asia Arena sent them falling to sixth spot after finishing with a 6-5 win-loss record.

Had they won, the Texters’ would’ve faced Star, which they beat in the eliminations. Instead, they will now face sister team NLEX, which beat them in the regular season.

“We’re still in the twice-to-beat (spot),” Uichico said. “Iba lang kalaban namin. That’s the only difference between winning and losing tonight.”

[See Cone says face-off with former team Star will be 'really, really hard']

The Texters’ matchup versus the Road Warriors is on Saturday, also at the MOA Arena.

Uichico also hopes the relatively long break will give ample time for Mo Tautuaa to fully recover from back spasms.

“It will take some time, but this four-day break might improve him a bit for our playoff games,” Uichico said of his prized rookie slotman, who finished with four points, three boards, and two assists against four turnovers in 14 minutes against the Gin Kings.

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