Rain or Shine is targeting one of the two twice-to-beat incentives as the Philippine Basketball Association Season 42 Philippine Cup elimination round resumes on Friday.
The Elasto Painters posted a 107-97 win over Northern Luzon to close 2016 on a high note last December 23.
“We are targeting to win our first game in 2017 against Phoenix and treat the campaign one game at a time. I talk to the players to give their best this year for Mommy Yu who just passed away last year,” Rain or Shine head coach Carlos Garcia told The Manila Times on Tuesday.
Mommy Yu or Margaret Yu is the mother of Rain or Shine co-owner Raymond Yu.
“We have to avoid injuries and stay healthy although we took a long lay-off,” he added. “We still have five more games and we’re targeting at least to win three of those five games. But if we can sweep those five games, why not? We have a good shot of doing that if we play hard.”
Rain or Shine began its campaign under its new head coach Garcia last November 20. The team has won four of their six games last year for a 4-2 win-loss record. Two-time Most Valuable Player James Yap is also doing well with his new team. In the last four games, Yap notched an average of 10 to 12 points per game.
“I’m still adjusting with Rain or Shine system although the focus is now there. We’ll return to practice on the 27th. I’m not thinking of winning any MVP award, but my goal is to bring this team to championship,” said Yap in separate interview.
Meanwhile, the 6’7 Raymond Almazan is still recovering from a pulled calf muscle, according to Garcia.
Rain or Shine will face Phoenix Petroleum on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.
Besides Yap and Almazan, Gabe Norwood, Beau Belga, Jewel Ponferada, Anthony Jay Washington, Jericho Cruz, Don Trollano, rookie Mike Tolomia and Maverick Ahanmisi will also lead the Elasto Painters’ charge.