Sleepless nights are back for Phoenix as team fails to meet expectations in Govs' Cup

Sleepless nights are back for Phoenix
"Itís really painful, disappointing conference for us. Mas painful kasi itís our first time ma-out sa quarterfinals. A lot of more sleepless nights, lalo na ang tagal pa bago makabawi eh." --- head coach Ariel Vanguardia.

ANTIPOLO --- Expectations were high for Phoenix in the 2017 Governors' Cup.

The team has made it to three straight playoffs and the Fuel Masters welcomed "El Destructor" Eugune Phelps back as their import.

A better playoff outing, or maybe even a semifinal appearance, was not a bad outlook and it appeared that the team was living up to promise after an impressive 2-0 start.

However, Phoenix hasn't won a game since and its season is now practically over with a 2-8 record.

It didn't help that Phelps went down with an injury Phoenix missed the services of top gunner Matthew Wright for Gilas Pilipinas.

Still, it's not like Wright is the only scoring option for the team and Phelps' replacement, Brandon Brown, was actually pretty good himself.

The Fuel Masters just didn't meet expectations.

"I just think we're just not good enough yet at this level. Straight up, we're just not good enough yet," Wright said Wednesday as Phoeni lost s 111-116 decision to ROS at the Ynares Center here.

"We just have to simply get better and become a better team, come up with better game plans, be able to execute better, and just come back a much more different team next year," he added.

After a slow and steady rise to become one of the more respectable teams in the PBA, it seems like Phoenix took a step back this conference.

Missing the playoffs for the first time as the Fuel Masters, all that there is left to do for the young franchise is improve and improve again.

But Phoenix will have to endure a couple more sleepless nights especially with an eight-game losing skid.

"It’s really painful, disappointing conference for us. Mas painful kasi it’s our first time ma-out sa quarterfinals. A lot of more sleepless nights, lalo na ang tagal pa bago makabawi eh," head coach Ariel Vanguardia said.

"Talagang masakit para sa akin. I’m sure pati yung team, masakit din sa kanila. I think they wanted din naman…Who wants to be in this position? We have to learn from this and come out a better team," he added.

 

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag

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