PBA Finals: Mixers go for the clincher, Boosters look to forge Game 7
San Mig Coffee got its first taste of the lead in the finals with a 114-103 victory over Petron Sunday in Game 5 of the 2013 PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Photos by NUKI SABIO
MANILA, Philippines — San Mig Coffee head coach Tim Cone spoke of how it gets tougher for the Mixers as the series draws to a close but perhaps, it doesn’t get any harder than what Petron Blaze needs to do to take the title.
The Boosters, the top team in the league, are on the verge of falling out of their best-of-seven championship duel as the Mixers go for the kill and the PBA Governors’ Cup plum Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
And it’s no secret as to who has to step up for Petron to forge a winner-take-all Game 7.
“We need him (Arwind Santos) in this series. He is one of the reasons why we reached this far and I think if he contributes more, it will be good for us,” Abanilla admitted after his team dropped a 103-114 decision in Game 5 last Sunday.
Arwind Sa ntos, the lea gue MVP, has been groping for form the last couple of games — averaging just five points per game in Games 4 and 5 — both Petron losses as San Mig Coffee took a 3-2 series edge.
But Abanilla and the rest of the Boosters aren’t just going to give up on Santos despite his untimely struggles.
“We assured him that our confidence is still with him. I assured him that the team is backing him up and we believe in him. For us, he is a valuable piece and we need him.”
For Cone and the Mixers, the hardest game is the close-out game especially against a desperate Boosters squad.
“As the series gets longer it gets tougher. Our mindset is that it’s going to be tougher than the last game,” said Cone, seemingly bracing for a Petron storm right from the get-go of Game 6.
“I’ve been here before, and I don’t want to overstate the fact that they’re a good team. I don’t want to be prophetic saying they’re capable of turning the series around. We’re just gonna rely on our games and just play,” Cone added.