Rain or Shine gives back to its ‘sixth man’
Even the deepest team in the league could use additional manpower.
Rain or Shine showed strength in numbers on Monday and it came by the hundreds as the Elasto Painters’ fans filled up the activity center of Robinson’s Galleria during the team’s meet and greet.
“We started off slow but because of you guys, we won the championship,” said rookie Maverick Ahanmisi as he addressed the thick crowd in front of him.
“Sila yung bumubuhay hindi lang pati sa amin, pati na rin sa PBA,” veteran sharpshooter Jeff Chan, a fan favorite, told INQUIRER.net. “I hope dumami pa lalo yung mga loyal fans namin. Again, sila yung sixth man namin.”
The event was held just three days after the Elasto Painters won their franchise’s second PBA title at the expense of the Alaska Aces in six games.
And somehow, the program for the fans served as a continuation of the team’s championship celebration that began at Araneta Coliseum on Friday night.
The event was also a chance for each and every Painter to give back.
“Sobrang saya. Nakakataba ng puso,” said Paul Lee, the MVP of the Finals, on seeing the number of fans as he went out on stage. “Hindi ko inexpect na ganito na pala karami ang fans ng Rain or Shine. Sobrang saya lang talaga.”
“We feel very grateful that they came out to see us not only here but also during our games and practices,” said Chan. “And this event is for them. We want make them happy through winning and win or lose they’re always there for us.”
From its team officials to the players, Rain or Shine hopes to see its fans at the end of the next conference where the Elasto Painters are eyeing for another crown.
“Alam kong ilang beses na tayong kinapos, maraming heartbreak, pero hindi kayo tumigil na sumoporta. Kayo po ang nagsilbing inspirasyon sa amin para makuha ang championship na ito. Sana simula pa lang ito ng marami pang championship na dumating,” said Chris Tiu, who drew the most deafening cheers.
“Four years ago, nung nag meet and greet kami di pa ganito karami ang tao, ngayon ganito na,” said Lee. “Kita kita ulit tayo next conference.”