MANILA, Philippines – NLEX coach Yeng Guiao is now contemplating "drastic measures" after the Road Warriors suffered another disappointing result against the Meralco Bolts in the 2017 PBA Commissioner's Cup on Sunday.
Down by just two points, 67-69, at the end of the third frame, NLEX proceeded to give up 12 straight points to the Bolts to start the final quarter. They were never able to recover, and Meralco took the 91-84 win to drop the Road Warriors to 0-2.
"We were in the game for three quarters, we were playing good offensively and defensively, and then the usual thing happens. We collapse in the fourth quarter," said Guiao after the game. "So we still have to find the cure for that."
This problem has hounded NLEX since the All-Filipino Cup, Guiao's first conference in charge. The feisty head coach is the first to admit that his team remains "a work in progress," and that fans need to be patient with the Road Warriors.
Still, Guiao stressed, "We can't wait too long."
"Kailangan siguro may mga drastic measures that we should take in the next few weeks. So we'll see how it comes together," he said. "We are hoping that it still comes together. It's just two games."
"But there are only nine games left in the conference, eliminations, and I feel we need to win at least six in order to give yourself a chance in the playoffs," he added.
Guiao did not specify what "drastic measure" he felt they should take, nor did he impose a deadline on his team. NLEX had already tried to make some trades in the offseason, but ultimately could not make a deal.
Now, Guiao said he is reluctant to make a trade just for the sake of trading. Any deal he makes will have to net an upgrade for NLEX, or at the very least, an equal return.
"Pero kung walang mag-trade, at hindi rin parehas 'yung material, why trade?" he said.
In the meantime, the Road Warriors will continue to try to improve and hopefully put a winning run together. That may entail playing import Wayne Chism longer minutes, and it will surely require them to put on a better effort than they did in the fourth quarter against Meralco.
"We felt that, I thought we were good until the fourth quarter na biglang nawala," said Guiao. "Defensively, nag-collapse, and offensively, we couldn't make shots off their zone."
"So we just have to look at those weaknesses and find ways to remedy them," he said.
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