LA Tenorio was one tired guy when he emerged from the Barangay Ginebra dugout shortly after the Gin Kings suffered a 90-104 Game Two defeat to the superbly conditioned Alaska Aces on Friday night.
Tenorio said the Kings did everything to stop the Aces juggernaut, but the boys of coach Alfrancis Chua simply had no answer to everything Alaska threw at them in the first two games of the best-of-five championship series.
“Ang hirap. Ganda din kasi ng ginagawa nila (Aces),” said Tenorio. “Ang dami pa nilang player. Ang bilis ng palit nila. Ilang players ba ang double figures nila? Eh last game pito. Iyun ang key sa kanila, kaya fresh sila.”
The former Ateneo star has been doing everything in the series -scoring, rebounding, passing, playing defense and oftentimes trying a bit too hard, leading to forced shots and turnovers.
But in the end, he couldn’t hide his disappointment because the Aces were simply unbeatable up to this point.
“Lahat ginawa na namin eh. Pero kailangan namin maglaro ng 48 minutes. Maganda sa simula tapos relax, tapos dun sila lalayo,” he said.
“Pero factor din yun,” added Tenorio referring to fatigue, since the Gin Kings had to go through knockout games against Rain or Shine in the quarterfinals and a Game Five against Talk ‘N Text to reach in the Finals.
Come Sunday, Tenorio hopes to find some answer to Alaska’s defensive riddle and avert an embarrassing sweep at the hands of his former team.
History is also not on the Gin Kings's side since only two teams have battled back from a 0-2 deficit to win a best-of-five title series - the legendary Crispa Redmanizers against Toyota in the 1976 Third Conference and Purefoods over Alaska in the 1990 Third Conference.