Alaska coach Luigi Trillo believes his Aces didn’t get anything other than a 1-0 lead by winning Game 1 of their PBA Commissioner’s Cup title series with Barangay Ginebra.
“He (Alfrancis Chua, the Ginebra coach), didn’t lose anything,” Trillo said. “His guys will be fresh for Friday (today). He did a good job of not playing them extensively when we had a huge lead early.”
While it appeared that Trillo was downplaying his chances despite the lopsided 87-70 win on Wednesday night, another victory in their 7:30 p.m. duel at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay today virtually secures the title for the Aces since the series is just a best-of-five affair.
Alaska held the Gin Kings to an all-time playoffs low six points in the first quarter on Wednesday, led by as many as 30 and had little trouble weathering Ginebra’s finishing kick at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Chua, on the other hand, admitted losing that game right in the first half and needs his wards to start off strong in Game 2 to avoid being in a 0-2 hole no team in PBA history has ever climbed out of.
“I looked at (the stats) of my starters: 0-of-5, 0-of-6, how can we win?” Chua said. “I guess we still had a hangover of the Talk ‘N Text series and I want them to realize that. I told my starters that when I used the bench, we sort of made a game out of it.
“Their relievers played well, but I can’t say the same for mine,” Chua said.
The story of Game 1 was indeed how Alaska choked the Kings to near-submission in the first half and how the bench of the Aces delivered when needed, with RJ Jazul coming off the bench to shoot 16 and pace all shooters.