THE two owners of the Rain or Shine franchise were left in disbelief at how the team was able to dispatch a star-studded Petron side and reach the Finals of the PLDT myDSL-PBA Philippine Cup for the second straight season.
“Binilang ko after the game, we’re 5-1 (win-loss) against Petron this conference,” said a beaming Raymund Yu moments after the Elasto Painters wrapped up their best-of-seven semifinal series against the Boosters with a 97-88 win in Game Five on Friday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“It’s unbelievable to have that kind of standing against a powerhouse team like Petron.”
But Yu and fellow owner Terry Que both gave credit where credit is due, paying tribute to coach Yeng Guiao who they said did a masterful job of preparing an effective game plan which Rain or Shine simply executed in his absence during the series-clinching win.
“Magaling talaga si coach Yeng. We’re not a star-studded team. Our lineup is made up mostly of good role players, but they played their hearts out,” shared Yu.
“He (Guiao) squeezes every ounce of talent from the players that he handles,” he added, citing the improved plays of big man Beau Belga, Jeff Chan, Paul Lee, JR Quinahan, and Jervy Cruz under the multi-titled coach.
Guiao was not around when the Elasto Painters booked yet another berth in the championship series as he served out his one-game ban for excessive complaining to game officials and flashing a dirty finger sign on Arwind Santos.
But even in Guiao’s absence, chief deputy Caloy Garcia managed to get the best from his “orphaned” team, getting huge contributions from Belga, Chan, Lee, and even backup guard Ryan Arana.
Que, for his part, said he’s just amazed with the way Guiao has shaped the team in just close to three seasons that he has been handling the Elasto Painters.
“Nakuha na ni Caloy yung sistema niya (Guiao) eh, kaya alam na ni Caloy ano gagawin sa laro,” said Que.
Rain or Shine now awaits the winner of the other semifinal pairing between Barangay Ginebra and San Mig Super Coffee to determine its All-Filipino Cup Finals opponent.