Barangay Ginebra, with a whole new coaching staff led by Jeff Cariaso and Olsen Racela, tests the mettle of the GlobalPort Batang Pier in the 8 p.m. main game of the 2014 Philippine Basketball Association Governors Cup, Tuesday, May 20 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The most popular team in the league Barangay Ginebra, tries to live up to that popularity with victories starting with the game against the Batang Pier.
”Hopefully we can turn things around and finish the season strong. This team is capable of doing that,” said new head coach Cariaso.
On the other hand there certainly is nowhere to go but up for GlobalPort which won a single game last conference. With more time to build chemistry and teamwork Coach Pido Jarencio and the Batang Pier are looking to perform better this conference.
”We’re able to prepare more. We want to have a better conference and we’re ready for it,” said Jarencio.
GlobalPort will again rely on veterans Alex Cabagnot, Jay Washington and Mark Macapagal as well as rookies Terrence Romeo and RR Garcia.
Another plus for the Batang Pier is returning PBA veteran in import Leroy Hickerson. The swingman is known for his energy and scoring. As the Air21 (now Barako Bull) import he led the league in scoring during the 2010 Fiesta Cup. He had a conference high 49 points in one of his games.
Meanwhile, the semifinalists from last conference the Air21 Express and the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters take the floor in the opening 5:45 p.m. game. Air21 is looking to carry the momentum of its successful run in the Commissioner’s Cup when its faces an acid test in Rain or Shine.
The Express wants to build on its overachieving run last conference. Coach Franz Pumaren is hoping that the magic of the past conference remains with them in the Governors Cup.
”As a team, we knew what we’re capable of after what we achieved last conference. We’re really hoping we can continue what we’re doing and carry some of that here. Hopefully we can get a good start,” said Pumaren.