PHYSICAL therapists of grand slam-seeking San Mig Super Coffee have been working round-the-clock to ensure that the Mixers can shake off the aches and bruises caused by the compact 39th PBA season.
While gunners James Yap and Peter June Simon are now back in harness, physical therapists Nick Ocampo and Arcee Cua have been working with team doctor Raffy Sanchez to ensure that players get the best treatment in time for the team’s sudden-death showdown on Friday against Talk ‘N Text in the Governors’ Cup semifinals.
Ocampo said San Mig coach Tim Cone’s shortened player rotation in Game Four sure was a big gamble, which failed to reap dividends in the end following the Mixers’ 81-84 overtime loss that allowed the Tropang Texters to tie the series at two games apiece.
“Nagsabi na nga si coach na he will rotate our players. Kumbaga, nag-gamble na kasi siya towards the end (of Game Four) and it didn’t pay off kaya sobra-sobra ang minutes (of the key San Mig players),” Ocampo told Spin.ph.
Six San Mig players logged in 30 minutes or more during Game Four.
Import Marqus Blakely played 49 minutes, Joe Devance had 44 while Marc Pingris played 42.
But it’s not only the players who have been getting extended “minutes."
Ocampo said the medical team is doing everything to ensure every San Mig player gets the needed physical care after the team’s Thursday practice at the Ronac gym in San Juan.
“Usually ang ginagawa naman namin, hot and cold (treatment) sila (San Mig players) before practice. And then, they come early to do their stretches, and do their muscle release and hydration,” Ocampo added.
Yap, who hurt his fourth toe on his left foot in Game Two, has been playing through the pain.
And with a heavily-taped ankle, the two-time league MVP played like the “Big Game” James of old, firing 23 points, including the driving one-handed shot off Talk ‘N Text import Paul Harris that sent the game into overtime.
“Si James, tine-tape yung sa ankle niya,” he added.
On the other hand, Simon can still feel some pain on his back, but the San Mig therapist explained that they are also doing maintenance treatment and therapy to ensure the 34-year-old pride of Makilala, North Cotabato won’t miss any more games in the series.