B-MEG coach Tim Cone was in a good mood at B-MEG practice on Saturday, despite his team having lost the previous night to Talk ‘N Text.
“My daughter sent me something great on Twitter last night. She asked, ‘What are the two greatest words in sports?’ Can you answer it?” he asked.
“The answer: Game Seven.”
While he would have preferred to finish the series in Game Six, Cone is looking forward to an ultimate duel against the defending champion Tropang Texters, which pulled out a gutsy 92-82 win to tie the series at 3-all. Cone said there was little he could say to his players to further motivate them for the deciding game, which is set at 6 p.m. Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
“It’s Game Seven, they already know that,” he said.
Cone’s counterpart Chot Reyes, for his part, quipped after Game Six: “In the end, one game for all the marbles. Dapat ‘di na nilaro yung anim na game eh, dito rin pala babagsak.”
Experience not a factor
Despite winning the last game, the Tropang Texters aren’t putting any stock in the idea that they have momentum moving forward.
“Wala. Once nag-start na yung game, doon mo pa lang ma-fe-feel yung atmosphere, kung kanino pa-pabor,” said Jayson Castro, the hero of Games Two and Six, on his feelings heading into Game Seven.
“Parang yung last game nga, after na nung first quarter, we were down mga 15? Tapos naka-recover pa kami.”
Reyes is also quick to shoot down the idea that their vast experience in the finals gives them any sort of advantage in the clincher.
“Obviously, it will be a factor but the other side has a ton of championship experience as well,” said Reyes. “From the coach to James Yap, to Marc Pingris, Joe Devance, Yancy De Ocampo, all those guys have been here before.”
“It’s a factor but it’s not like the other team doesn’t have it as well.”
Putting the ball in the basket
Reyes, whose team is seeking to defend the Commissioner’s Cup, said that the final game comes down to one thing: putting the ball in the basket.
“I don’t know what we need to do, but we need to shoot well in Game Seven,” he said.
The Tropang Texters has blown hot and cold this series. They sizzled in Game Six to avoid elimination, shooting a blistering 14-of-29 (48.3%) from beyond the three-point line to turn back the Llamados.
Scoring is also the main concern for Cone, who has gotten big contributions from import Denzel Bowles and superstar guard James Yap, but not much from the rest of his team. Bowles and Yap have accounted for 118 of the 164 points scored by B-MEG in the past two games.
“You guys need to be ready to come in and contribute. We need to support Denzel and James,” Cone told his players at the end of B-MEG practice.
Yap echoed his coach’s sentiments.
“We need to play as a team. Hindi pwedeng ako lang at si Denzel ang gagawa,” he said.
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