SAN Miguel Beer coach Biboy Ravanes acknowledged that sister teams San Mig Super Coffee and Barangay Ginebra are both road blocks to their title chase in the PBA Governors Cup.
But Monday night will be an exemption as Ravanes and the rest of the Beermen will be silently rooting for the Mixers, the defending champions, when they take on Rain or Shine in the final playdate of the short single-round eliminations phase.
That’s because a win by San Mig could give San Miguel Beer a free ride to the No. 4 spot and a twice-to-beat advantage against Ginebra in the quarterfinals.
But should Rain or Shine, already guaranteed of a spot in the Top Four, beat San Mig, San Miguel Beer will fall to the No. 5 seed and will instead, face the Mixers, who will enter as fourth seed in the playoffs.
Alaska will grab the No. 3 seed in the process, with Rain or Shine securing the second spot. Talk ‘N Text is already guaranteed of the top seed in the playoffs by virtue of its 96-92 win over Ginebra on Sunday on the way to a 7-2 win-loss card.
Ravanes said the team’s Monday preparation for the playoffs wasn’t that difficult anymore, considering that San Mig and Ginebra are running the same triangle system under coaches Tim Cone and Jeffrey Cariaso, respectively.
But the soft-spoken San Miguel coach said both sister teams won’t be easy playoff opponents.
“Sa Ginebra, malaking factor dun si Greg (Slaughter), at lalo na medyo maganda na ang takbo ng offense nila,” Ravanes told Spin.ph after the team’s Monday practice at the Reyes gym.
The Beermen rookie coach admitted that aside from Slaughter, they still have to find ways to limit the scoring of import Zach Mason and locals like LA Tenorio, Japeth Aguilar, Mark Caguioa and even Chris Ellis.
“To be honest, we have to bring our A-game against Ginebra, maski pa sabihin mong makuha namin ang twice-to-beat kapag nanalo ang San Mig,” added Ravanes, whose team dropped a 98-105 decision to Ginebra last week.
Asked about the possibility of facing a twice-to-beat San Mig in the quarterfinals, Ravanes admitted the Mixers are well-versed with the triangle offense, having played together for the past two seasons with a lot of championship success.
“Champion team na sila (Mixers), plus ang mga guards nila ready na iyan anytime. In fact, kahit nakapikit sila alam na nila gagawin nila sa triangle,” noted Ravanes, who has been working side by side with active consultant Todd Purves in preparing the Beermen the last two conferences.