PBA FINALS: Different Magnolia team will challenge SMB for the title this time
Paul Lintag on Apr 29, 2019 03:45 PM
After a trying All-Filipino campaign in 2019, the Hotshots scrambled just to once again make the Finals.
Magnolia barely put up a challenge in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup Finals against San Miguel Beer, eventually losing in five games.
In the year since, the Hotshots got their own championship, winning the 2018 Governors’ Cup and establishing themselves as a gritty team with chemistry that’s second to none.
After a trying All-Filipino campaign in 2019, the Hotshots scrambled once again just make the Finals.
Waiting for them a second time are the now four-time champion Beermen.
Whether or not Magnolia can get a different result remains to be seen but one thing is for sure, the Hotshots are already a different crew from the one that got demolished in five games last year.
“I think nag-mature din kami,” head coach Chito Victolero said during the official press conference of the Philippine Cup Finals Monday.
“Last conference we won a championship, malaking bagay yun. The experience and the maturity nung grupo na to, nandun na. The core is there,” he added.
While the Hotshots are different, the Beermen are different in 2019 as well.
San Miguel has since added Christian Standhardinger and Terrence Romeo to its All-Filipino lineup, making an already powerful team even more terrifying.
“It’s a big factor with Christian and Terrence pero wala naman kaming magagawa dun,” Victolero said.
“We just try to prepare hard. We know we’re the underdog, sa start pa lang underdog na kami eh. Lahat na dinaanan namin, pero laban lang,” he added.
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