The Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok is scheduled for a best-of-seven semi-finals series against the NLEX Road Warriors at 7:00 P.M. on March 20, 2018 live from the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
After their series got tied at 2-2, the Hotshots took Game 5 and now leading in their Best-of-Seven series. The Road Warriors will throw it all in their 7:00 PM battle to prevent elimination and keep their All-Filipino Finals hopes alive.
Apart from their series got tied after Game 4 match, during the opening quarter of Game 5 or just 40 seconds of official time Kevin Alas tore his ACL in his right knee. That makes even for both teams as Marc Pingris also suffered similar injury at the beginning of the semi-finals series.
Without Alas in NLEX lineup, their manpower rotation floundered and was one of the factors why they lost Game 5.
“That was big, it kind of messed up our rotation,” said Ravena. “Wala pang one minute into the game and he was one of those who was motivating us as one of our co-captains.”
The former Letran Knight superstar is expected to be sidelined for eight months or that is equivalent an entire 2017-18 PBA season.
“Kung alam naman na wala siya, mas napag-handaan namin. Biglaan yung nangyari kaya nakakawala ng diskarte,” said NLEX coach Yeng Guiao.
No celebration for the entire Magnolia Hotshots after winning their previous game and got ahead with 3-2 in their semis series. It is still fresh from the mind of Ian Sangalang how they lost to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel last year having the same advantage.
“Hindi kami nagcelebrate kanina after the game, tahimik lang kami kasi gusto namin manalo next game,” said Sangalang. “Hindi namin pwede ibigay sa kanila. Gusto namin kuhanin yung game. So ipupush namin kung anung magagawa namin, kung anung kaya naming gawin, gagawin namin.”
Coach Chito Victolero wanted also to throw all what they can do inside the basketball court in order to take the franchise back to the Finals since the 2014 PBA Governors’ Cup.
“I told my players we need to bring our teeth on defense,” related Victolero. “We need to go to our strength, which is our defense. The last two games, kahit nanalo kami nu’ng Game 3, that’s not our game,” added Victolero.
“Iyun ‘yung adjustment namin, kailangan naming dumipensa.”
- Magnolia vs NLEX | March 10, 2018 | PBA Livestream – 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals Game 1
- Magnolia vs NLEX | March 12, 2018 | PBA Livestream – 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals Game 2
- Magnolia vs NLEX | March 14, 2018 | PBA Livestream – 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals Game 3
- Magnolia vs NLEX | March 16, 2018 | PBA Livestream – 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals Game 4
- Magnolia vs NLEX | March 18, 2018 | PBA Livestream – 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup Semi-Finals Game 5