DEFENDING champion Alaska hopes the 11-day respite could serve team well as the Aces shoot for their first back-to-back wins in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup as they take on San Miguel Beermen in the first out-of-town game this conference at the Alonte Sports Arena in Binan, Laguna.
The Aces (2-3) closed out a grueling, 12-day stretch with a 98-88 victory over Air21 last March 17 before taking a long break.
Coach Luigi Trillo hopes the Aces won't show any rust at all when they face the Beermen in the Petron Saturday Special set at 5 p.m.
Trillo is well aware San Miguel is playing its best basketball this season, having won its last three games to post a 5-1 (win-loss) record to move just a game behind unbeaten leader Talk 'N Text (6-0) in the standings.
"They (Beermen) are playing very well. I mean they are No. 1 in assists, they are No. 1 in fastbreak points, in second chance points, and turnover points," Trillo noted.
Reigning Best Import Robert Dozier came back to the country last Tuesday following a four-day vacation in the United States to attend to his girlfriend who just gave birth to their baby.
"He's had four practices with us so far. We feel good because the game is on Saturday," added Trillo on the team’s decision to allow Dozier to leave the country briefly.
Meantime, San Miguel coach Biboy Ravanes said beating the reigning champion requires more than just relying on the Beermen’s talent, but rather, on sharing the basketball.
"Fastbreak saka assists, yan ang mga strengths namin kaya we need to keep sharing the ball. Kasi ang Alaska, they are strong. Di lang nagre-reflect iyan ngayon sa standings," Ravanes said.