GAMES TODAY (Araneta Coliseum)
CARRYING the baggage of its rousing quarterfinals stint, Barangay Ginebra starts its march back to glory, taking on Formula Shell in Game 1 of the PBA All Filipino Cup semifinals at the Araneta Coliseum.
But it's a bumpy road ahead as the Kings, who sprang back from being the last qualifier to being the mighty slayer of top-ranked quarterfinalist Mobiline, will face another heavyweight in the Zoom Masters at 7:30 p.m.
Defending champion Alaska Milk begins its own best-of-five series with newcomer Tanduay Gold at 5:30 p.m.
As opposed to the Kings' furious campaign, Alaska is launching its title-retention bid on a slow pace and will have to rely on their maturity against Tanduay, who carries the edge in youth and speed.
While talks about their heart-stopping 82-81 victory over the Phone Pals still go on, the Kings will have to prepare for a tougher battle against the well-rested Zoom Masters.
Unlike Mobiline, Shell isn't prone to complacency since the Zoom Masters are hungry to prove themselves as personified by the rejuvenated Benjie Paras, who has been showing the form that won him the 1989 MVP and Rookie of the Year awards.
This time, the Kings can't just rely on spectacular game-winning baskets since it's going to be a long series where the Zoom Masters, the Governors Cup champions last year, carry an advantage man-for-man.
Still, it's going to be an exciting matchup between a team with gung-ho attitude like Ginebra and another who is methodical and calculating like Formula Shell.
Ginebra's upset win over Mobiline Wednesday night sent top Phone Pal Asi Taulava packing to the United States. The 6-foot-9 Taulava broke down and slumped to the bench right after David's game-clinching jumper.
Dejected, Taulava immediately booked a flight to US tomorrow for a one-week vacation. Mobiline, who stormed to the top of standings with a 7-0 start only to lose the games that mattered, starts practice next week.
While Mobiline coach Eric Altamirano accepted their fate, he contested the alleged backing violation committed by David with less than a minute to play.
But league officials contended that the ball didn't cross the line and that it was only David who crossed the other side without any contact of the ball.
May 14, 1999