PBA Finals: Meralco hopes for the best as Almazan injures knee during Game 3
Paul Lintag on Jan 12, 2020 10:08 PM
Almazan made his exit halfway through the opening period Sunday after hurting his knee. (Photo by Josh Albelda)
After their Game 3 loss, the Meralco Bolts are now down 1-2 to Ginebra in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals.
To make matters worse, the Bolts could be without top center Raymond Almazan for Game 4 and perhaps the rest of the series.
Almazan made his exit halfway through the opening period Sunday after hurting his knee.
He was out of the Big Dome by halftime. The initial word is that he has a strained knee and is set to undergo further tests to determine the severity of his injury.
“When I talked to him at halftime of the game, he couldn't move his leg. And being a former player myself, that's never a good sign,” Meralco head coach Norman Black said of Almazan.
“I'll try to be as positive as possible, and hopefully he'll be okay, but from being a player myself, having a swollen knee in the middle of a championship series is not something you can just bounce back from that easily,” he added.
As they hold their breath regarding Almazan’s condition, the Bolts will also try to figure out how to make do if Raymond can’t go.
Almazan was seen as Meralco’s biggest missing piece and if he’s not healthy enough to play, that’s a big hole in the middle for the Bolts.
“Our biggest concern, obviously, is the fact that when Raymond's not around, you saw what happened with Japeth, right? He pretty much ran wild out there on the court. So what he has done this conference is giving us an opportunity to match up with the big men of the other teams,” Black said.
“And without him, we almost got a little bit of a hole in the middle. So we just have to try to find a way to camouflage or at least try to fix it,” coach Norman added.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8