Belga: Best record 'useless' if Rain or Shine exits playoffs early
MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine may have the best record in the PBA right now, but Beau Belga believes that would hardly matter if the team fails to translate its success to the playoffs.
The Elasto Painters became the first team to clinch a quarterfinals berth in the 2019 Philippine Cup after bagging their sixth win in 7 games following a valiant 98-94 overtime triumph over Phoenix on Sunday, February 10.
"Useless 'yung 6-1 and top seed kung 'di ka aabot ng malayo sa conference. 'Yun 'yung pinaka-challenge sa amin," Belga, who showed the way with 16 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists, told reporters after the game.
(It's useless to have a 6-1 record and the top seed if we cannot make a deep run in the conference. That's the challenge for us.)
"We just need to work hard just like kung ano 'yung mga ginagawa namin dito sa games na ito."
(We just need to work hard just like what we've been doing in the past couple games to maintain our success.)
Playing its seventh game since the PBA opened the season on January 13, Rain or Shine showed signs of fatigue as it was forced to an extra period for the first time this conference.
The match also marked the Elasto Painters' smallest win margin since drubbing their last 3 opponents by an average of 10 points.
Rain or Shine will then play its eighth game in exactly a month on Wednesday, February 13, against Magnolia before the league takes a two-week break to give way to Gilas Pilipinas' stint in the World Cup qualifiers.
While the continuous games may have taken a toll on their bodies, Belga was just glad that the Elasto Painters displayed excellent resiliency to retain their winning ways.
"'Yun ang kagandahan noon, kahit sunud-sunod ang laro, naipapanalo namin. Actually, most of the guys may nararamdaman, ako from Friday may ubo tsaka sipon ako. Pero wala, kailangan laruin dahil magkukulang kami sa tao eh."
(What's good is even if we had a series of games, we were able to win them. Most of the guys are hurt. I have cough and colds since Friday. But that's how it is, we need to play because if not, we will be undermanned.)
"Good thing pagkatapos ng Wednesday, mahaba-haba 'yung pahinga, makaka-recover 'yung katawan," Belga added.
(The good thing is after Wednesday, we have a long break so our bodies can recover.) – Rappler.com