San Mig Coffee remains unbeaten with RoS drubbing
MANILA, Philippines - The San Mig Super Coffee Mixers did not allow a ray of sunshine for the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters on Saturday, March 22 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
It was all dark clouds for coach Yeng Guiao and his troops as they fell off a deep 27-point cliff from which they could never climb out of.
The 2014 Philippine Cup champions stood tall after 48 minutes with just one deadlock and 3 early lead changes for a 91-74 win to keep them undefeated at 3-0 in the Commissioner's Cup.
"We had a little bit of everything going for us today," said head coach Tim Cone. "We played really good defense, we controlled the boards and just kind of overpowered them inside with Big James (Mays). The only danger we had all game really was Big James' foul trouble."
He added: "We stepped up offensively. PJ was making shots, James was making threes and our second group was playing good defense."
The Mixers were monsters on defense right from tip off all the way to the end, limiting Rain or Shine to under 20 points in each of the first 3 quarters, and at the same time going beast mode on offense led by import James Mays (18 points), PJ Simon (16 points), and Marc Pingris (10 points).
San Mig's defense held the Painters to a miserable 35.8% total field goal shooting clip, an uncommon sight on the Rain or Shine stat sheet with names such as Paul lee, Gabe Norwood, Jeff Chan and Beau Belga, all of whom are synonymous with scoring.
At the half, the field goal shooting percentages were much more alarming with Rain or Shine shooting 34.1% while San Mig Coffee hitting a far more effective 52.6%. By game's end the Mixers settled for 46.7%.
"We knew they were gonna come out and I think they (Rain or Shine) got frustrated when we started the game really well," Cone explained. "We knew we had to be real sharp to start the game and we were. If we weren't we were gonna give them the momentum they wanted coming off that loss from San Miguel."
Rain or Shine came close at the start of the second half after Chan buried his lone trey to cut the deficit to 45-40. But that was the closest they would come as Simon mounted a counter-attack with a solo 5-point swing on a jumper and a three-pointer. Mays added two points to make it 52-40 for San Mig Coffee.
The third was especially miserable for the Painters with just 14 points in 12 minutes. They had to weather 8 of James Yap's 9 points in that frame as well and could do nothing to crack the code on San Mig's defense.
It was only in the fourth that the Mixers let loose somewhat, allowing their Finals opponents from last conference 23 points. It was too late for them however as San Mig built their biggest lead of the game at 27, 84-57, with 5:55 left to play on an Alex Mallari drive to the basket, which was already the point of no return for Rain or Shine.
It was too much to overcome for them counting the Mixers' 17 turnover points off Rain or Shine's 18 miscues.
Despite only 3 Mixers reaching double digits, points were still evenly distributed as 12 of the 14 players fielded in contributed at least two points.
There was no offensive explosion needed from playmaker Mark Barroca as well, who surprisingly finished with just 5 markers.
Cone, a 16-time champion coach, put it perfectly, "It was really just kind of everybody contributed a little bit and it turned into a lot."
For Rain or Shine, import Alexander McLean contributed 18 points and 13 rebounds. Lee added 12 markers and 3 assists. Norwood and Chan only had 9 and 7 points, respectively.
San Mig Coffee 91: Mays 18, Simon 16, Pingris 10, Sanggalang 9, Yap 9, Devance 7, Mallari 7, Barroca 5, Reavis 3, Melton 3, Gaco 2, Holstein 2, Acuna 0, Cawaling 0.
Rain or Shine 74: McLean 18, Lee 12, Norwood 9, Chan 7, Teng 7, Uyloan 6, Almazan 5, Rodriguez 4, Belga 2, Cruz 2, Tiu 2, Tang 0, Nuyles 0, Ibanes 0.
Quarters: 28-19; 45-37; 70-51; 91-74. - Rappler.com