Game Today (Ynares Arena)
3 p.m. – Blackwater Sports vs Jumbo Plastic
After surviving their third straight knockout game, Blackwater Sports coach Leo Isaac believes his sixth-seeded team will overcome their last obstacle.
Blackwater Sports faces third-seed Jumbo Plastic on Thursday in another You-or-I match to determine the last semifinal cast of the PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup.
Game time is 3 p.m. at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City with the winner advancing to the best-of-three series against semifinalist-in-waiting Big Chill.
The Elite lived another by dominating the twice-to-beat Giants, 86-78, on Tuesday. Isaac said one day rest will not be enough for the Giants to prepare and recover.
“It’s anybody’s ball game but definitely the pressure is on their side,” Isaac said. “The confidence level of my players is very high. Momentum is on our side and we have the psychological advantage.
“All I have to do is remind my players that we are facing the same team that we beat last Tuesday.”
Blackwater Sports lived another day by dictating the tempo of the game Tuesday. The Elite slowed down the Giants with an effective half-court press.
“Our mindset will be the same. We’ll dictate how we want the game to be played,” Isaac said.
The Giants defeated the Elite, 79-72 in overtime in the eliminations. But they were visibly out of sync on Tuesday.
The inability of 6-7 center Jason Ballesteros to dominate the game and their 22 turnovers that netted Blackwater Sports 17 points made matters worse for Jumbo Plastic.
“The 19-day break really affected our rhythm. Our outside shots also didn’t fall. And somehow, the luxury of the twice-to-beat advantage prompted the players to relax a bit,” Jumbo Plastic assistant coach Joel Dualan said. “But the players are still in high spirits. We’re positive that we can bounce back.”