The San Miguel Beermen is scheduled for a head-to-head game against the Purefoods-Star Hotshots at 5:00 P.M. on June 10, 2017 in Smart Araneta Coliseum.
It will be the start of the best-of-five semi-finals series between the Aces and the Beermen. Both teams ended their elimination round with a superb 9-2 record.
The hunt for the elusive grand slam championship probably one of the priorities of coach Leo Austria and the rest of his Beermen in order to ink their names in the PBA history book.
However, with Ricardo Ratliffe in the Hotshots side the journey will be a tough one. The seasoned Beermen head coach is aware of the situation although they have beaten Star during the elims.
“We beat them in our previous match, but we’ll now have to deal with a bull-strong import in Ratliffe,” said SMB coach Leo Austria.
“Cardo”, that was his name to his Star teammates has led Star to a 5-of-5 record is not new on playing Charles Rhodes. Both players are popular in Korean Basketball League.
“Rhodes is a good player. Sometimes, he beat me, but we won the championship,” said Ratliffe.
The 6 foot and 8 inches Hotshots import also have a bad memory with the Beermen as San Miguel eliminated Star during the quarterfinals round of 2016 PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
This series will also serve as his redemption game.
For coach Chito Victolero, having Ratliffe in his lineup is only one of his winning ingredients. However, his hot streaking team will also collide with the best front court in the league plus their supporting casts.
“San Miguel will be a lot tougher because of their experience, the frontcourt combination of June Mar Fajardo, Charles Rhodes and Arwind Santos plus their magnificent guards. We have to have a good defensive scheme,” said Star coach Chito Victolero.