IN light of San Miguel’s playoff debacle in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup, Sol Mercado said the Beermen can learn a thing or two from the way San Mig bounced back from the same experience in the not-so-distant past.
The former Biola University standout, who turned 30 on Tuesday, recalled how a top-seeded San Mig squad fell twice to eight seed Powerade in the quarterfinals of the 2012 Philippine Cup.
And yet, Mercado pointed out that since the playoff meltdown, the Mixers have won three league championships over the last six conferences and even have a shot at making the Finals again if they win over Air21 Express in their sudden-death match on Wednesday night.
The 'Sol Train’ could only keep his fingers crossed that the Beermen would rise from its last debacle the same way San Mig did in 2012.
“I truly believe God has a purpose in all these (Beermen’s playoff debacle) because if you look at it, not to compare us, but this happened before to San Mig, which lost to Powerade. They were No. 1 and 8 and had twice-to-beat advantage and lost,” recalled the San Miguel combo guard.
“Now look at them (Mixers), they are in the Finals constantly. If you can let something like this that hurt so bad and make you stronger and learn from it, we can get a lot better from this,” he said.
The Beermen entered the Commissioner’s Cup playoffs as the second-seeded team after finishing the single-round eliminations with a 7-2 (win-loss) record to grab a twice-to-beat advantage against No. 7 Air21.
Unfortunately, the Beermen imploded in the quarterfinals, wasting their twice-to-beat edge after being shown the door by the underdogs Express.
The Beermen hope the return of import Elijah Millsap can help the team atone for the playoff meltdown in their upcoming Governors Cup campaign.
Mercado said lessons learned can only make the Beermen a better, stronger, and far more consistent team.
“Hopefully, the hurt that we felt can motivate us to take every single day and every single drill in practice seriously, preparing for never wanting to get hurt again,” added the 6-foot Mercado, who spent some time working out with fellow Fil-Ams Marcio Lassiter and Chris Lutz, along with Paolo Hubalde inside the oven-hot Acropolis gym in Libis, Quezon City on Wednesday.