Travis: Aces outworked Hotshots in all facets
ANTIPOLO CITY, Philippines—Magnolia had a chance to take an insurmountable 3-0 series lead against Alaska in the PBA Govenors’ Cup on Sunday night at Ynares Center here.
What the Hotshots get instead, however, was a 100-71 punishment as the Aces finally made it a series after cutting the deficit to 2-1.
Magnolia’s 29-point loss was the franchise’s worst ever in the PBA Finals after it broke the 28-point losing margin interestingly to Alaska as well in Game 5 of the 1997 Governors’ Cup championship.
Romeo Travis said his team practically just showed up at the game thinking that their presence and talent alone were enough to get them the win.
“I tried to warn the guys and myself about complacency and the thinking that we can just show up and win,” said Travis. “But we’re not a good enough to do that. We’re not talented enough to just show up and win.”
“We have to work hard because they outworked us on both ends and all facets of the game tonight.”
Although the Hotshots owned a 49-46 rebounding advantage, they didn’t have the ball movement and spacing to complement that muscle underneath.
Magnolia shot the ball at a 26-of-77 clip, 6-of-17 from deep, while allowing the Aces to go 38-for-78 from the field and 11-of-29 from beyond the arc.
And the most glaring disparity between the two teams was the assist totals with the Aces dishing out 25 dimes—more than double of the Hotshots’ 11.
Alaska point guard Chris Banchero had 11 assists alone and he played for just 28 minutes.
“We had bad possession on offense, followed by horrible possessions of defense and it’s pretty much how you lose games,” said Travis, who finished with 18 points. “We didn’t play basketball the right way. We only had I think 11 assists and I think Chris had that by himself.”
Adding insult to injury was Mike Harris’ third-quarter explosion of 22 points.
Alaska’s import eventually finished with 36 points and 18 rebounds in 30 minutes of play.
“Mike Harris killed us, and we didn’t’ respond as a unit and that’s what happens.”
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