PBA: Raymond Almazan AWOL as Rain or Shine stumbles to 0-4

Philip Matel on Oct 07, 2018 08:46 PM
PBA: Raymond Almazan AWOL as Rain or Shine stumbles to 0-4
The Caloy Garcia-mentored squad is slumped to a 0-4 win-loss slate after a close 99-93 loss against the 6-1 Blackwater Elite.

SANTA ROSA CITY -- It has been quite a reversal of fortunes for the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters. 

Just last August, they were proudly representing the country in the Asian Games, its core, bolstered by Jordan Clarkson, Stanley Pringle, and Christian Standhardinger to a fifth-place finish, the country's best finish since 2002.

They were chosen by the PBA and the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas due to their 9-2 record, the best during the mid-season tournament. 

But now, the Caloy Garcia-mentored squad is slumped to a 0-4 win-loss slate after a close 99-93 loss against the 6-1 Blackwater Elite. 

What's more interesting for the Elasto Painters is that center Raymond Almazan has not reported to the team for the past three days. Ironically, the Colegio de San Juan de Letran product scored his career-high of 26 points against the then-lowly Elite last June. 

Nobody on the team knows where the big man had gone, as Almazan had not talked to anyone, including management, says Garcia.

"He's the one who leads this team in rebounding and syempre yung depensa niya yung importante. But like I said, we have to do without him, we have to work with what we have and find ways to win with what we have," the tactician said.

Garcia also took reponsibility for the loss, as the team was not able to build on a one-point lead after the first quarter and instead trailed by eight, 39 - 47, by halftime.

ROS also came up short on crunch time after Maverick Ahanmisi, the game's top scorer laid the ball to cut the deficit to two, 94-92, but only managed to score one more point in the last 42 seconds.

"I think it's just consistency of playing the game. We started the game very well but when we made the substitutions, bumaba na naman yung quality ng game namin."

With Rain or Shine's fortunes might become worse as they face the red-hot defending champions Ginebra in another out of town game, this time in Lucena on Saturday, Garcia hopes to play better by then.

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