Barangay Ginebra San Miguel coach Tim Cone is hoping his team can capitalize on another chance to keep its title-retention bid alive in their playoff for the final PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals berth against Phoenix Super LPG on Saturday, Sept. 25.
The Gin Kings lost their final elimination round assignment against the Meralco Bolts but kept their hopes of taking the No. 8 seed in the quarters alive when the NorthPort Batang Pier prevailed over the Alaska Aces.
That’s why Cone wants to see Ginebra display its old form despite its struggles throughout the eliminations.
“We have been given an unexpected reprieve, so we want to do our best and take advantage of it,” Cone said. “The guys know the road is tough, and has been tough, but it starts with one step. That step starts with our game against Phoenix.”
A win will send the Gin Kings to the quarters in a twice-to-win disadvantage against the top seed TNT Tropang Giga, who won 10 of 11 during the eliminations.
Ginebra split its first four games in July when the first two weeks of the conference was held at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
But Bacolor hasn’t been kind to the Gin Kings, who lost five of the seven matches to fall into danger of an early exit.
Also making things worse are the absence late in the eliminations of Japeth Aguilar due to an MCL sprain and Scottie Thompson, who was placed under the league’s health and safety protocols.