MANILA, Philippines – accordingly, Blackwater and Terrafirma’s PBA Commissioner’s Cup campaigns have not gone exactly how they had hoped.
The Bossing and Dyip are now looking to exploit their collision on Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum to acquire that much-needed momentum going to their respective difficult stretches in the mid-season conference.
Blackwater initially appears to be at a disadvantage because it only has a day to make a quick turnaround after losing to NorthPort last Wednesday by a heartbreaking score of 83 to 87, while Terrafirma has had a full week to rest and prepare after losing to Meralco by a score of 92 to 105.
“Sinasabi ko lagi sa kanila na hanggang may games buhay pa kami, na may pag-asa pa,” Cardel recounts.
(I always tell them that s long as we have games, we are alive)
“Sa tingin ko naman hindi nag-ba-back down sa challenge ang players and ‘yung fight nila nandoon pa rin,” added Cardel.
(I think, the players will never backdown on a challenge, and the fight is still there)
“Makuha lang namin ang breakthrough (win) sure ako na magtutuloy-tuloy na kami.
(When we get the Breakthrough, we need (win) fir sure we will it will be continuous)
Due to the fact that the Bossing have a 2 to 3 slate, Blackwater may not be in as bad of a situation as its cellar-dwelling opponent. Ariel Vanguardia, the team’s coach, will have his hands full trying to instill in his players the steadiness they need to maintain a lead, just like Cardel did.
“So far… hindi pa sanay mag-protect ng lead, na tuloy-tuloy mag-dominate, Vanguardia has stated.
(So far, he is not yet used to protect the lead who continues to dominate)
In their matchup with NorthPort, Blackwater did hold the lead for the most of the game. They even held a 74-66 advantage early in the fourth quarter and maintained that lead heading into the final 6:43 of play.
However, the Batang Pier managed to steal the victory when Vanguardia’s squad shot a dismal 2-of-12 from the field and committed a turnover in the final seconds, whether it was due to the Batang Pier’s defense, the Bossing growing complacent, or a mix of both.
The fact that Terrafirma’s star local, Juami Tiongson, is still listed as day-to-day after suffering a sprained right ankle late in the third period of the Meralco game is one factor that may work in Blackwater’s favor.