The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters succumbed to the San Miguel Beermen in a high-scoring and emotion-filled match, 114-129, despite Wayne Chism‘s 50-point, 14-rebound performance. ROS’ import did not get enough help from the locals as Paul Lee and Raymond Almazan could not reach double figures until late in the game, contributing 14 and 10 respectively.
SMB was dominant for most of the match, with Rain or Shine only showing signs of life in the third period when they came within one possession. The Beermen refused to collapse, and in no time, they got to rebuild their double-digit lead and successfully held onto it until the end.
Tensions rose in the dying minutes when SMB’s reinforcement Arizona Reid had a verbal exchange with his former coach, Yeng Guiao. Both were slapped with technical fouls, along with ROS Assistant Coach Caloy Garcia, for “using profane language.” Guiao was later ejected from the court for “physical contact” with Reid who inbounded the ball from the Painters’ bench right after the commotion.
Reid and June Mar Fajardo both had monster games, combining for more than half of their team’s score. Reid finished with 41 points, 7 rebounds, four assists, and four steals, while Fajardo produced 30 points, 19 rebounds, three assists and three blocks. SMB also got significant support from Arwind Santos (18 points) and Alex Cabagnot (14 points, 8 rebounds).
1. Rain or Shine’s usual top-notch defense just wasn’t clicking against Reid and Fajardo. The Kraken – Chism’s main assignment – was very aggressive all throughout the game. He trooped to the line 21 times, and managed to convert 16 of his freebies. Jireh Ibanes and Gabe Norwood took turns in guarding Reid, but their former teammate firing at will proved to be too much to handle. The defensive unit that Coach Yeng deployed had a difficult time dealing with SMB having too many offensive options on the floor aside from their two big men. ROS gave up 129 points (61 at the half!) when they used to only allow less than 90.
2. Reid, Santos, and Cabagnot combined for 13 of the 16 triples that SMB made. The most problematic was Reid who made four consecutive treys (6-of-9 in total) early in the fourth quarter. Rain or Shine was visibly rattled by the Arizona show, which they tried to counter by settling for outside jumpers that they couldn’t finish. The Painters only managed a total of 10 three-pointers with Chism, who was on fire from downtown in their previous game, only drilling one out of seven attempts.
3. Turnovers definitely killed the Elasto Painters. They gave away 19% of their possessions (22 turnovers versus SMB’s 14), mostly due to bad passes. Credit goes to SMB’s tight defense. The Beermen were quick to double an attacking Chism or Lee. They read Rain or Shine’s moves so well that they were able to intercept the ball so many times. ROS could not get any momentum going because they kept on losing the leather, which resulted to 13 points for their opponent. There were also too many instances when they dwelled on their mistakes (forced/unforced errors, missed shots) and excessively complained about non-calls, which slowed their transition and gave the Beermen several opportunities to outrun them on the opposite end.
Rain or Shine failed to move up the standings, but they still have a chance to grab one of the top two spots by the end of the conference. They need to get back in the groove as they face their next assignment, Barangay Ginebra, who is also looking to bounce back from a heartbreaking loss against NLEX.
Featured image courtesy of Paul Ryan Tan, Sports 5