Alab Pilipinas’ hopes are fading for homecourt in playoffs

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Mar 12, 2017 03:40 PM
Alab Pilipinas’ hopes are fading for homecourt in playoffs
STRUGGLE. Lo Domingo and Alab Pilipinas need to get back into their groove - or else, they may find themselves on the outside looking into the playoff picture.

Once on a hot streak for the top two spots, and the homecourt advantage for the playoffs it brings, Alab Pilipinas are now having a hard time clinging on to the third-seed.

Dropping four of their last five, the Filipinos saw their once-impressive 8-4 standing become an alarming 9-8 record.

And seemingly, there’s no light at the end of the tunnel with two of the Philippines’ remaining three games up against league-leading and title favorite Hong Kong.

Yes, the same Eastern Long Lions side which blew out the blue, red, and white to the tune of a 13-point average margin of victory.

Still, head coach Mac Cuan remains defiant, believing that his struggling squad is more than capable of pulling off an upset. “If there’s one good thing that happened last game, it’s that we proved we can compete with a powerhouse like Hong Kong. If not for the flat start, it would have been a close game,” he said.

He then continued, “The game was close from the second to fourth quarters.”

If that indeed is true in their matchup on Sunday in Sta. Rosa, Laguna, Alab will not only get back on track, they will punch a place in the playoffs as well. Moreover, they will also prevent Hong Kong from clinching the top-seed in the tournament.

For homecourt advantage of their own, however, the Filipinos are praying for a Singapore loss to Kaohsiung.

The Slingers are one win away from ensuring a top two finish. If they lose out on all of their three remaining assignments, however, the door remains open for the Philippines.

Nonetheless, the three-seed and a matchup with prospective two-seed Singapore wouldn’t be so bad for Alab – even without homecourt advantage. After all, they boast of two wins in the head-to-head matchup.

What Cuan and company want to avoid is a playoff series against top-seed Hong Kong which, again, has dominated them.


Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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