May 31, 2012
Games Today (Ynares Sports Arena)
2 p.m. NLEX vs Blackwater Sports
4 p.m. Big Chil vs Cebuana Lhuillier
A fully rested NLEX Road Warriors squad tries to continue its amazing run as the defending champions start their semifinal series against Blackwater Sports in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup.
The Road Warriors are coming off a one week break after their 72-55 blowout of Boracay Rum last May 24 to complete a nine-game sweep of the eliminations—a run they hope to sustain to bolster their quest for a title repeat.
Game 1 of the best-of-three series between the Road Warrior and the Elite is 2 p.m. at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City, after the other semifinal series Big Chill against third ranked Cebuana Lhuillier at 4 o’clock.
Blackwater Sports advanced to the Final Four by dispatching RnW Pacific Pipes, 76-69, on Thursday, giving it little time to rest and prepare for the series opener.
“They (Blackwater Sports) are the league’s top offensive team so I don’t believe that we have an advantage over them,” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez.
The Road Warriors, who are aspiring for a third consecutive championship, won by 15 points over the Elite in their only meeting in the elimination round. But Fernandez stressed at the time the Elite were without Kelly Nabong, the league’s scoring leader, who was serving a one-game suspension.
“I have no doubt that this is a tough series. So if we intend to win the opener and the series as well, we have to bring our defensive mentality every game,” Fernandez said.
Obviously, Blackwater Sports coach Leo Isaac doesn’t look at it that way.
“It will be very tough for us to match up with them,” Isaac declared, when asked about his concern in the series.