MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine head coach Yeng Guiao believes his team is now a real contender for the PBA Governors Cup crown after their gritty victory over the Talk 'N Text Tropang Texters in their last game of the elimination round.
The Elasto Painters leaned on the heroics of import Jamelle Cornley to grind out a 92-90 win over the Texters, giving them a league-leading 8-1 record.
"It's a satisfying win – a win against the best team in the league in the last few years," Guiao told PBA.ph. "Talk 'N Text has nothing to prove. The burden of proof lies with us."
"I think we've proven that we're a real contender and not a pretender," the fiery mentor added. "Rain or Shine is for real."
"Hinog na hinog na ang team na ito."
It is the first time that the Elasto Painters have topped the league standings after the elimination round. They are two full games ahead of the B-Meg Llamados, who have a 6-3 record.
"We're hoping two more wins would be enough to bring us to the finals," Guiao said. "But we're not looking to win just two more games. We look to win as many games as we can to toughen us up, reinforce and fortify our system and confidence."
"We'll play scared. We'll play like we need to win every game. That's the attitude we like to ingrain in our minds," he added.
Guiao also got a strong performance from Paul Lee (18 points) and Jeff Chan (14 points). But it was Cornley who sealed the win when he broke an 85-all tie with a drive and two free throws, then blocked a potential game-tying shot from Ranidel de Ocampo.