RAIN or Shine is looking to cap its red-hot elimination round campaign in the PBA Philippine Cup on a bright note as it eyes no less than a victory over Barangay Ginebra for an outright semifinals berth Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Fresh from a rousing 98-95 come-from-behind win over Alaska, the Elasto Painters are shooting for their seventh straight win against the Kings in their 5 p.m. match.
A loss would be fatal for the Elasto Painters as they would drop to as low as the no. 4 seed team in the playoffs, and would require them to go through the quarterfinal phase where they’ll settle instead for a twice-to-beat incentive.
Coach Yeng Guiao knows that bowing to the Kings (6-4) would mean flushing down the drain their efforts for an outright semis seat.
“We’re on a six-game win streak, but if we lose on Sunday, that streak will be worthless, so we have to cap this (game versus Alaska) off with a win on Sunday,” said Guiao, whose team has yet to lose in a month.
“We’ll just give our best again and we expect a similar game again on Sunday against Ginebra. We’re not there yet (semis), but it’s a good jump off to Sunday’s game for a greater motivation to win.”
Ginebra, which is coming off a confidence-building 101-92 win over Alaska, intends to use the game against Rain or Shine as a way to prepare itself for the playoffs.
“First of all, tomorrow’s (Sunday’s) game will surely prepare us for the playoffs,” said coach Jeff Cariaso.
“Defense will be key to make it far so that is where we will focus. Transition defense, especially against Rain or Shine will be absolutely crucial.”
The Kings’ nine-point win over the Aces snapped their three-game losing skein, and more importantly, secured for them a spot in the top 6, along with a twice-to-beat edge.
Meantime, Alaska and Talk ‘N Text will interested spectators on the sideline during the Ginebra-Rain or Shine match.
Should Rain or Shine and San Miguel Beer drop their respective final games in the eliminations, Alaska and Talk ‘N Text will automatically seal the two automatic semis berths.
Alaska and Talk ‘N Text ended their respective elimination round campaigns tied at 8-3.