RAIN or SHINE coach Chris Gavina actually thinks also that the talented young players will indeed truly benefit from even their own actual experience playing versus Barangay Ginebra even after making a valiant late-game stand.
Regardless of the lack of two veterans in Rey Nambatac and Gabe Norwood, again the Elastopainters tried it with as many as 21 points but then again managed to keep fiercely competitive until falling 90 to 85 at all to the Gin Kings.
Rain or Shine was already led directly by Mike Nieto (15 points), however the Elastopainters also already recently received solid continued efforts mostly from Andrei Caracut (12 points) and rookie Gian Mamuyac (10 points) within his first tournament match against Barangay Ginebra.
Gavina honestly feels also that probably playing against all of Ginebra will vastly improve the promising young players, the fact that the majority most of whom here are from the Ateneo and La Salle education programs, such as with Nieto, Caracut, and Mamuyac.
Gavina excelled in the face of the Ginebra crowd.
“The learning curve in the PBA is extremely difficult especially when you go up against Ginebra and their crowd. Just the atmosphere they bring. Yeah, these guys are coming from Ateneo and La Salle but it’s a different animal when you deal with the Ginebra crowd sometimes. And the level of talent you go up against, it’s a totally increased level. Their ability to adapt, to be honest, comes from great programs. I know they are willing to put in the work and learn from this experience,” Gavina specifically stated.
Well if Barangay Ginebra already has a “Never Say Die” mentality, Rain or Shine hopes and aspirations to establish and maintain a “Never Back Down” sort of mindset following Wednesday’s game.
Gavina highly praised the players’ best efforts while also still keeping wishing for more and more stability and consistency in their own play at the moment enough so that they are really not compelled to battle all throughout games.
“I brought up to the guys about a never-back-down mentality. If we can avoid those instances where we have to fight back, in the first half, we fought back from 16, in the second half, from 17, it will just give us more of an opportunity to win, put ourselves in the situation where we can win a game with three minutes left where we are not fighting tooth and nail for everything,” Gavina stated clearly.
Gavina explicitly stated that Nambatac and Norwood would have already completely changed the game’s clear complexion, yet it was also an incredible moment once again for the young players to flourish.
“Those two guys had played at this high level, especially Gabe. Rey loves playing against these San Miguel teams. These guys are stepping up when we need them in big match-ups against the elite teams.
“But I told them, look at each other down the line. We have eight guys that are about one or two years in this league. I said ‘Who am I supposed to look at?’ Rey and Gabe aren’t here. It’s on you guys to take this challenge, accept it, and learn.”