by Waylon Galvez
Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok guard Paul Lee took their 4-3 series defeat to mighty San Miguel Beer positively, saying they will become tougher next time.
“For me natuto kami from last year na nakalaban namin sila,” said Lee following a 72-71 loss to now five-time all-Filipino conference champion San Miguel Beer in Game 7 Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“Maybe not this time, siguro darating din yung time namin,” said Lee.
While they were on the verge of completing a back-to-back, Lee said the experience they learned from the series will make them a stronger team in the coming conferences.
“But for sure natuto kami sa series na ‘to, yung na-gain namin na experience… malaking bagay samin yun kahit natalo kami,” said Lee.
The team entered the best-of-seven finals series against the reigning four-time Philippine Cup champion San Miguel Beer as ‘underdogs’ – a tag Lee and the rest of the team embraced.
— Waylon Galvez (@batangBOYAA) May 15, 2019
The team even took a 3-2 lead following an 88-86 win in Game 5, and they were ahead during most part of the winner-take-all Game 7.
They had several chances to take the lead down the stretch but misses by Ian Sanggalang and Jio Jalalon did them in.
The 6-foot-1 Lee said that with the Commissioner’s Cup scheduled to start this Sunday, he said that this finals loss should serve as motivation for the Hotshots to get back and try to improve.