Steely attitude keeps Rain or Shine’s drive going
MANILA, Philippines — Coach Yeng Guiao normally throws a fit on players with a weak character. Such is the fortitude that the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters project in the deciding stretch of the PLDT MyDSL PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven Finals.
“Don’t ever show a sign that you’re ready to give up,” Guiao keeps telling his Elasto Painters. “Or else, it will be the end of your career,” added the firebrand mentor.
With the steely attitude, they narrowed the gap, 3-2, with an 81-74 win over the San Mig Coffee Mixers Sunday.
Game 6 is set Wednesday. Jeff Chan was toughness personified and the tenacity rubbed off on cerebral guard Chris Tiu, sturdy forward Beau Belga, Gabe Norwood and Jireh Ibanes, a shut-down defender who never gives up on a stiff play.
Shooting poorly in the first four games, Chan summoned his usual rhythm and finished with 24 points, including 10 straight early in the fourth and a turnaround jumper that took the sting out of the Mixers for good.
“Never show me that you’re gonna give up in these series, even in your body language,” said Guiao, who is eyeing a second title for the franchise and a first All-Filipino plum. “I told them that if they’re discouraged, they just need to keep that to themselves.”
“We’ll try to delay or postpone the celebration of San Mig. If we can delay it enough, it could be our celebration,” said Guiao.
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