YENG Guiao feels now is the best time to play Talk ‘N Text - a team Rain or Shine has yet to beat after six tries this season.
For one, Guiao said Talk ‘N Text is coming off an emotionally-charged 93-85 overtime win against Petron, leaving the Tropang Texters (5-4) with just one day to prepare for the game the Elasto Painters (6-3) on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“It’s hard to find an advantage against Talk ‘N Text. But then, they are coming off an emotionally charged win against Petron, so possibly, they are tired at this point. Plus, they only have one day to prepare for us,” said the Rain or Shine coach.
A win would be most welcome.
The Painters lost to the Texters via 4-0 sweep in the Philippine Cup Finals and still had no luck when the two teams met in the first round, losing 76-86.
Talk 'N Text, Guiao admitted, is a match-up nightmare for the Painters owing to the quickness and potent outside shooting of guards Jimmy Alapag, Jason Castro, and Larry Fonacier.
“Of course, they have the quickness advantage, which has been our usual problem, which is why it’s hard to double because they have a lot of shooters,” Guiao said.
It would also be interesting to see how Bruno Sundov matches up against the quicker Talk ‘N Text import Donnell Harvey, who is coming off a PBA career-high 38 points and 17 rebounds against the Boosters on Friday.
Talk ‘N Text coach Norman Black said there’s nothing new for the team except to keep playing defense.
“It was our defense again that won the game for us (against Petron). I know we won the all-Filipino championship but that seemed like years and years and years ago at this point,” Black said, noting how the team has struggled to play consistently on defense this conference.
Jared Dillinger, though, will miss Sunday's game due to a swollen Achilles and bone bruise on his knee, which he sustained at the tail end of their game versus Petron.
Defensive ace Ryan Reyes is a game time decision (knee), while big man Ali Peek is expected to be back after the Holy Week, according to Black.