Ross confident Beermen can pull through, with or without him
Despite sitting out the second half with a strained right thigh, Chris Ross was the least surprised that San Miguel stayed in the thick of things late in Game 3.
“We’re a champion team. Just because I’m not there doesn’t mean that we’re not a champion team,” he said on the heels of the Beermen’s 87-95 Game 3 defeat to Ginebra Tuesday in their 2018 PBA Philippine Cup semifinals series.
“We got a lot of fighters in our team and I got faith in everybody who coach puts in that they’re gonna go out there and compete. So it didn’t surprise me at all that we had a chance in the end to get close. The ball only bounced their way today.”
San Miguel fought back from 14-points down, 79-65, entering the fourth period and got to within three numerous times in the final six minutes of the game.
But with the Beermen playing without one of their stars, their come-from-behind 104-102 Game 2 victory could not be replicated as the Gin Kings finally managed to score one game in the best-of-seven series.
Ross played only 16 minutes and finished with six points, five rebounds, and three assists as coach Leo Austria took precaution and opted to no longer field in the two-time Defensive Player of the Year in the second half.
“We don’t want to aggravate it. This is a long series so we didn’t want to risk him in the second half,” the mentor said.
Ross shared that this injury has long been bugging him even before Game 2 last Sunday.
“I just played through it. I got some treatment yesterday and it was OK and felt OK, and then in the first quarter, I felt something and couldn’t really move it.”
— Randolph B. Leongson (@RLeongsonINQ) March 13, 2018
But Ross vowed to be in uniform for Game 4 on Thursday as San Miguel aims to bounce back from this defeat and take a 3-1 series lead.
“I’ll be ready. I’m a warrior,” he said.