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SMB-RoS series could be physical

Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao sees not just a long semifinal series against defending champion San Miguel Beer, but a highly emotional and probably a physical one.

“It’s going to be a long series, I don’t think anybody will predict a short one… probably six to seven games to decide the winner of this semifinal series,” said Guiao.

“It can also be very emotional and physical. I can’t tell how physical but I hope referees would be consistent, it’s the first playoff for Commissioner Chito Narvasa and in the past, they (refs) usually allow more physicality.”

“So we don’t know (under new commissioner), we’ll feel it out in the first two games,” added Guiao, whose team won against SMB in their lone meeting in the eliminations, 99-84, last Nov. 6.

Guiao’s SMB counterpart, Coach Leo Austria, feels the same way as he expects a tough series.

Austria predicted earlier that Talk ’N Text would survive the knockout stage of quarterfinal round, but Rain or Shine – his former team – proved him wrong as the Elasto Painters eliminated the Tropang Texters with a masterful 104-89 win last Monday at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City.

It was actually a double-whammy for the SMB mentor as he also missed on his forecast by leaning on Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, which Globalport ousted with an 84-83 overtime win last Sunday.

“But for your information, our preparation really is we’ll be facing Rain or Shine (even before its quarterfinal match with TNT). Parang reverse psychology lang, we intend not to mention RoS, pero alam ko na sila ang magiging big obstacle para sa amin,” said Austria.

Guiao refused to comment on Austria’s prediction.

“To me it’s not relevant. Our opinions as coaches are not always right,” said Guiao. “That’s his opinion and I don’t take that personally, or hold any grudges on coach Leo by underestimating our strength.”