Contrasting missions


THE door is ajar for the Magnolia Hotshots.  But not yet for either TNT Tropang Giga or San Miguel Beer (SMB).

A win on Wednesday (today) for the Hotshots will give them the first Finals berth in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Philippine Cup. Their 3-1 lead is too daunting to topple.  It’s like the proverbial Damocles sword hanging over the Meralco Bolts’ head.

But then, will Meralco give up the ghost without a fight, if not yield that easily?

How many times have we seen a team suddenly resurrecting itself from a rut, resurfacing from nowhere like horror stuff in the silver screen?

Never ever write off a foe till the last whistle is blown.

But be that as it may, take a glimpse of Game Four between Magnolia and Meralco on October 10.

If we use that as barometer to size up the situation of the two teams’ best-of-seven semifinal series, somehow, it would appear that the Hotshots, also known as the Pambansang Manok, are a cinch to seal the deal.

After yielding Game Three following their back-to-back victories in Games One and Two, the Hotshots unleashed their much-vaunted fury two days later to easily manufacture a pivotal 81-69 Game Four victory.

That moved Magnolia up with a critical 3-1 lead—a lead that the Bolts know would be too massive to obliterate, given that Meralco’s one foot is in the grave already.

Thus, Meralco needing to win the last three games is a mission that is almost as impossible to reach as any dreamer’s unreachable star.

And, as for Magnolia, it’d be a disaster of tsunami proportions if the Hotshots eventually miss their bus to the Finals.

Now, as to the other semifinal duel between SMB and TNT, Wednesday’s Game Five will practically put the series in the line of fire.

For, whoever wins today will likewise put the loser’s back against the wall.

Like Magnolia, San Miguel has the edge if we go by Game Four’s character, where the Beermen literally ripped the Gigas to shreds with a blitzkrieg typical of SMB’s famous offensive that produced five successive All-Filipino titles ending in 2019.

With SMB’s murderous 116-90 victory on Sunday, propped up ludicrously by 37-point margins several times, it’d be safe to say that that series-tying win could be the Beermen’s bridge to get there again.

As one pundit said it:  “When SMB wills to win, it is unstoppable as the force of nature.”

Seems like it.

THAT’S IT Alvin Patrimonio, the four-time PBA MVP, is running for mayor of Cainta, Rizal.  He is just one of so many basketball players—retired and active—seeking elective positions in the 2022 elections.  Honest, decent and God-fearing, Alvin will make a good mayor if he wins.

Read full article on BusinessMirror