McKines says NLEX loss a wake-up call for SMB: 'We gotta stop getting hit first and start swinging first'
Wendell McKines hopes the Beermen starts strong for a change starting with their match against the slumping Aces. Dante Peralta

WENDELL McKines believes San Miguel Beer needs to reevaluate what it needs to do in its quest for a grand slam following a stunning 103-100 loss to NLEX in their PBA Governors’ Cup on Sunday night.

The SMB import put up another workmanlike effort with 28 points on 11-of-22 shooting, 14 boards, six assists, and two steals, against three turnovers  in almost 44 minutes, yet his team still fell to their second loss in five outings – that he hopes would spark a sense of urgency in the Beermen.

“It's a wake-up call,” McKines said after the game. “We gotta go back to the drawing board and figure things out in practice.”

SMB’s other loss came at the hands of sister team Star, 104-98, in a game where they were without June Mar Fajardo.

The Beermen had Fajardo in tow against the Road Warriors, but the three-time reigning MVP played sparingly due to a calf injury.

Still, McKines refused to take anything away from the Road Warriors, who are handled by his former Rain or Shine coach, Yeng Guiao.

“We gotta give credit to our opponents,” McKines said. “They're giving us their best shot, and we're taking their best shot and then we're coming back. Eventually we gotta stop getting hit first and start swinging first.”

After all, the Beermen fell into a 25-10 hole in the first quarter before scoring 14 unanswered points to pull within a point at the end of the quarter, although they played catch-up the entire game.

McKines, though, is moving on, looking forward to its game against winless Alaska on Saturday in Pampanga.

“It’s a must-win game,” McKines said. “Their backs are against the wall. This is a critical game for us, so we're gonna approach it as a must-win game.”

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