RONALD Tubid and Gabby Espinas are reminding their San Miguel Beer teammates to keep their heads up, insisting that the PBA Philippine Cup Finals against Alaska is far from over despite the Beermen in a 0-2 hole.
After all, the two veterans were part, nay on opposing sides, of a title series where one team overhauled the same deficit in a best-of-seven series and went on to win the championship.
Tubid was a vital cog of the Barangay Ginebra squad that clawed back after losing in the first two games of the 2007 all-Filipino conference finals against, ironically, San Miguel Beer, where Espinas was then a rookie.
Five other teams have overcome a 0-2 deficit in a best-of-seven series, according to PBA chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III.
"Doable naman eh,” Tubid said in a chat with Spin.ph after practice on Wednesday. “Kung i-summarize namin 'yung last two games namin, we could’ve won those games.”
“Siguro diinan lang namin depensa namin tsaka more disciplined sa game plan,” he added.
The Gin Kings, led by Eric Menk, who’s now with Alaska, went behind by two games, but swept the next four to win the most prestigious crown in the league.
“I can feel what I felt when it was with Ginebra: parang nawawalan kami ng pag-asa, pero parang lang,” Tubid said.
“We need to have some pride,” added one of the league’s premier defenders. “Defending champion tayo tapos magiging (ganito) tayo. Not because wala si June Mar (Fajardo), hindi na natin kaya.”
Espinas said he took the initiative by talking to his teammates after they lost Game Two, 83-80, on Tuesday night.
“Actually nagsalita ako sa team kagabi, in-example ko yung rookie year ko,” Espinas said. “Sabi ko nandyan si Ronald at siya yung makakapagpatunay na possible yung ganun dahil nangyari na sa amin 'yun.”
“Pero hindi kailangan pumunta lang tayo sa game at maglalaro tayo,” he added ahead of Game Three on Friday in Lucena. “Kailangan dagdagan natin yung effort natin at talunin yung effort nila.”
That one game is all it takes, Tubid believes.
“Pag nakabalik kami ng isang laro, tuloy-tuloy na 'yan.”