Alaska owner wants another ‘most special’ PBA PH Cup crown
As the drive for 15 continues, Alaska owner Fred Uytengsu would love nothing more than to add the 2016 Smart Bro PBA Philippine Cup crown to the franchise’s collection to commemorate its 30th year in the league.
It has been 16 years since the Aces last lifted the All-Filipino trophy, the longest drought among PBA teams.
“The All-Filipino is the most special championship a PBA team could win. We would like nothing more than to win this championship,” he said after the Aces’ 118-89 Game 5 victory against GlobalPort to win the series, 4-1, and advance to the Finals.
Still on a high after clinching the team’s 29th Finals appearance, Uytengsu admitted that Alaska’s past defeats, especially the loss to San Miguel in last season’s Philippine Cup still stings, which makes the Aces more motivated to come back and close the deal this time out.
“Last year’s All-Filipino championship was such a painful loss because we were there, clawed ourselves back from double figures in the second half and each of those games, we won. In Game 7, we clawed back from 22 points, we led with less than a minute to go, and we let it slip through our fingers,” he said, recalling Arwind Santos’ heroics for the Beermen in that fateful final minute as San Miguel snared the Philippine Cup title.
“The reminder there is to play 48 minutes of hard basketball each game, and we’ll have to do it in every game we play and we hope we come up with four wins this time,” said Uytengsu. “I would love nothing more but present rings to them for our next All-Filipino run.”
Despite the chance of redemption if another Alaska-San Miguel Finals duel gets set up, the team owner did not pick a particular opponent he wanted the Aces to meet.
“We’re going to play who wins, and you have to be careful who you ask for. We want to play Rain or Shine because maybe, they don’t have the tradition and the experience of San Miguel, and they’re very talented with a lot of weapons. We wish to play San Miguel for redemption, and they won two of the last three championships. Either way, it’s going to be hard,” said Uytengsu.
“To be the best, you got to beat the best, so I don’t care who we play as long as we win.”
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