MANILA, Philippines – Even without three key contributors -- Gabe Norwood, Jireh Ibañes, and Raymond Almazan -- the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters were still too much for a much-improved Phoenix squad to handle.
Almazan was still dealing with a calf injury and was expected to miss the game. Norwood's absence, however, was a surprise, with coach Caloy Garcia later revealing that the veteran guard is dealing with sore eyes.
Yet even without them, the Elasto Painters still came away with a comfortable 97-82 victory on Sunday in their PBA Philippine Cup game against the Fuel Masters.
As has been the norm for Rain or Shine in recent years, other players stepped up in their stars' absence. Chief among them was Jericho Cruz, who had 21 points off the bench – nine of which came in a crucial fourth-quarter stretch that quelled any possibility of a Phoenix comeback....
Only 12 players have so far made it to the list.
But the league may soon add a new name in the elite group as former two-time MVP James Yap of Rain or Shine is just 231 points away from reaching the impressive milestone....
MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine guard Jericho Cruz battled not just the Phoenix defenders, but his own illness, when he led the Elasto Painters to a crucial 97-92 victory over the Fuel Masters on Sunday at the Big Dome.
The guard did not disclose it at the start of the game but revealed afterwards that he is struggling with flu-like symptoms, and had been sick for four days ahead of their game.
"Coming into this game, 'di ko ine-expect na bibigay ako ni Coach Caloy (Garcia) ng playing time kasi I was sick," he revealed. "Pero ayun, 'yung trust niya sa akin ay nandoon, kaya siguro pinag-laro niya ako."...
The 71-year-old Yu passed away last December 26, depriving Rain or Shine its biggest fan and one of the most passionate basketball patrons in the country.
Both the Elasto Painters and the Phoenix Fuel Masters, their opponents on Sunday, took time to honor her ahead of their PBA Philippine Cup game at the Big Dome....
MANILA, Philippines – The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters kept their hold on the second spot in the league standings after shooting their way past the Phoenix Fuel Masters, 97-82, in the 2016-17 PBA Philippine Cup on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.
The Elasto Painters used a huge third quarter to break the game open, while Jericho Cruz anchored a crucial fourth-quarter stretch to keep Phoenix at bay.
With the victory, Rain or Shine improved to 5-2, just behind defending champion San Miguel Beer in the team standings....
|Team History (Last 10 Conferences)|
|2016-2017 Philippine Cup||5||4||0.556|
|2015-2016 Governors' Cup||5||7||0.417||9th|
|2015-2016 Commissioners' Cup||16||7||0.696||Champions|
|2015-2016 Philippine Cup||12||7||0.632||3rd|
|2014-2015 Governors' Cup||9||7||0.562||3rd|
|2014-2015 Commissioners' Cup||15||7||0.682||Runn er-up|
|2014-2015 Philippine Cup||11||6||0.647||3rd|
|2013-2014 Governors' Cup||12||8||0.600||Runner-up|
|2013-2014 Commissioners' Cup||7||8||0.467||3rd|
|2013-2014 Philippine Cup||18||8||0.692||Runner-up|