MARC Pingris admitted the revolving door of imports at Magnolia this conference had a big effect on the Hotshots’ campaign in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
The Hotshots’ title bid this conference came to an end on Tuesday when they lost a 26-point decision to Barangay Ginebra, 106-80, for a sweep in the quarterfinal series.
In all, it was Magnolia’s sixth straight defeat after the Hotshots reached as high as third place in the standings of a tournament where they started out with John Fields, who later gave way to James Farr.
Farr soon gave way to Rakeem Christmas, who came in for the final game of the eliminations against TNT but had only a few days to prepare for the game.
Christmas arrived on the back of a one-year break from competitive basketball following the pregnancy of his fiancée, Michael Jordan’s daughter Jasmine.
The additional days with Magnolia weren't enough as the Hotshots suffered a sweep over the Gin Kings in the quarterfinals.
Pingris said the changing of imports did have an effect on the team.
“Kumbaga, naging epekto ‘yun sa team kasi papalit-palit ng import. Hindi mo makuha ‘yung sistema,” said Pingris.
To be fair with their imports, Pingris said they had little time to get accustomed to the system of head coach Chito Victolero.
‘Yung foundation na binubuo ni coach, okay sa all Filipino pero ibang-iba sa conference na ‘to kasi import ang nagdadala eh. Laking bagay ‘yun ‘yung adjustment na makapag-practice sila ng two weeks dito, okay ‘yun. Sa game na mismo dumarating. Kahit sinong import na malakas, mahihirapan ka talaga mag-adjust,” said Pingris.
Pingris hopes that the early exit will be an additional motivation for the team.
“Part ng game. Talagang napaghandaan ng Ginebra. Sinabi lang ni coach na siguro kailangan magpahinga ng mga players. Kumbaga may plano si God sa amin. Kailangan pagbalik namin, mas gutom kami,” said Pingris.