Llamados shoot for 3-1 cushion
Texters eye equalizer againBy Musong R. Castillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
TIM Cone is relishing every moment he’s been with B-Meg so far.
“I’m still not used to it whenever the coliseum goes crazy after a big shot,” Cone said after taking Game 3 for a 2-1 lead in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup title series Friday night against Talk ‘N Text.
“It was, I mean, a great game. Everything you want is in it—excitement, suspense. It’s simply amazing to play in this setting.”
Cone is hoping to find himself in a more comfortable setting when the Llamados gun for another win and a commanding 3-1 lead in their 6 p.m. collision with the Tropang Texters at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Cubao.
“Usually, a team that wins back-to-back games has a good chance of winning the series,” Cone, a winner of a rare Grand Slam in 1996 while with Alaska, said. “That’s the mentality we’re going to take for Game 4.”
And while Cone is heaping praises on his players, especially import Denzel Bowles and former two-time MVP James Yap, his counterpart at Talk ‘N Text, Chot Reyes, has publicly taken shots at two of his veterans and conceded that they don’t have a chance at the rate they’re playing.
“We are not going to beat [B-Meg] until Jimmy (Alapag) and Ranidel (De Ocampo) come back from their vacations,” Reyes said after the 87-91 Game 3 loss. “They were completely absent. Wala sa laro ang utak nila (Their minds are off the game).
“(Joshua) Urbiztondo is abusing Jimmy Alapag,” Reyes pointed out after Urbiztondo hit three triples in Game 3 that proved pivotal. “And (Marc) Pingris is shutting down Ranidel de Ocampo.”
Alapag was good for just six points and De Ocampo contributed just a single free throw. As a team, the Texters had just eight assists for the night.
“They shut down Jason and that should have opened things up for Alapag and De Ocampo,” Reyes said. “But you can’t win games shooting less than 40 percent.”