The Barangay Ginebra Kings have decided among themselves to treat each and every game a knockout setto in their great desire to win the bubble crown.
They’re determined to pound every opening, seize every opportunity and take advantage of any advantage that they could have.
And that could well be their mindset if Bobby Ray Parks is really unable to play in Game Two of the PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven finals at the AUF Sports Center Powered by Smart 5G.
“LA (Tenorio) was telling us let’s treat all our remaining games as do-or-die, no-tomorrow; our last chance to win this all-Filipino crown,” Japeth Aguilar said.
“We never know, this might be my last time to play in an all-Filipino championship,” Tenorio said. “Whatever it takes again, whatever it takes for us to win every game, to get the win, we’ll take it.”
The Kings go for the 2-0 advantage in the race-to-four series, targeting a follow-up to their 100-94 overtime triumph Sunday as they tangle with the Tropang Giga at 6 tonight.
The Tropang Giga barely lost the series opener as Jayson Castro couldn’t make his tab at a game-winner in the closing seconds of regulation.
A big blow was the strained calf muscle that Parks sustained, making him highly doubtful for Game Two.
“Ray is highly doubtful to play in Game Two. We are hoping he could play on Friday,” the TNT team said after getting the result of Parks’ MRI test at the nearby Medical City.
Parks has been TNT’s lead gun in the tourney, averaging 22.5 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.3 steals per game for a league-leading 38.3 statistical points average through the semis.
And despite the injury, the super sophomore top scored with 20 points and also came through with five steals, four rebounds, four assists and two blocks Sunday.
But with or without Parks, coach Bong Ravena said they have to be on their toes or they would be in trouble against the sharp, cohesive Ginebra team.
“We should learn from Game One and hopefully, it will be a different ball game on Wednesday,” he said.
Ginebra coach Tim Cone heaved a sigh of relief they squeezed through Wednesday.
But he expects more of the same – gut-wrenching, nerve-wracking, knife-edge duel – for the rest of the series.
“This is just the first game. There’s going to be a lot of back and forth in terms of everything – scoring, adjustments – and seeing how fresh people can stay through this rigorous, really rigorous, seven-game series,” Cone said.*SB/PBA.PH