Momentum at stake for San Mig, RoS in PBA Finals Game 4 tonight
MANILA, Philippines - Game 4 will be about momentum for both the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers and the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters as they collide anew on Friday, February 21 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Mixers came from behind and delivered defensively to bring down the Elasto Painters in Game 3. How will Rain or Shine respond? We will find out tonight.
What went right for San Mig: The Mixers prevailed in the nail-biter which saw 5 deadlocks and 18 lead changes. Using a solid defensive stop in the final play, they forced Paul Lee to go to Jeff Chan who attempted a trey in desperation. Coach Tim Cone's wards outrebounded the Rain or Shine crew again, 49-39 with Rafi Reavis getting 11 boards. Joe Devance has been steady in the last two outings too, averaging 13 points.
What went wrong for Rain or Shine: It has been another tight encounter for coach Yeng Guiao's boys, but unfortunately they were not able to win it via a last possession play. Right after the match Guiao said they can't plan to win games just on last-second plays.
Keys to victory
San Mig: This was the second time the Mixers limited Rain or Shine to less than 80 points; in Game 3 particularly, they allowed RoS to score just 12 points in the final period, spelling the difference. They should continue pressing Rain or Shine with their hard-nosed defense to boost their chances of winning 3 in a row.
Rain or Shine: Rain or Shine shot fairly well (40.5%) but failed to draw firepower from their wing guys. Jeff Chan was only 1 of 5 from downtown; the loss of Ryan Araña really hurt RoS as other wing guys like Gabe Norwood, Jeric Teng and Jireh Ibañes only combined for 6 markers. These men must step up offensively and create more opportunities to score.
San Mig: Ian Sangalang
It was another efficient outing for the hardworking Mixers rookie, scoring 12 points (5 of 6 FGs) and adding 5 rebounds in just 19 minutes. If he continues playing this kind of basketball then San Mig will have less problems.
Rain or Shine: Beau Belga
After a 15-point production in Game 1, RoS' burly center was shut down in Games 2 and 3, where he was reduced to just 6.5 points a night. He should bounce back and also make a big presence - quite literally - to help the Painters.
What this game means: Whoever wins this match gains huge momentum heading into Game 5. Either San Mig will carry a 3-1 bubble or Rain or Shine knots it at 2-2 carrying a mental advantage. Expect another down-the-wire finish between two determined franchises. -Rappler.com