|While overconfidence may have played a factor in SMB's Game 4 loss, it was the foul trouble on Charles Rhodes and Junemar Fajardo that played a huge role in the result according to Coach Leo Austria.|
By Ivan Saldajeno
QUEZON CITY--San Miguel coach Leo Austria told the media that he felt something strange in his team during Game 4 of the PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals against TNT at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday night.
"Kanina, it seemed na ibang-iba ang energy nila. A little bit of confidence ang pumasok sa amin. We're too relaxed," said Austria.
He also said that his fears came true when the KaTropa fought back late in the fourth quarter to steal the win from the Beermen.
[Related Story: TNT rallies late to down SMB for 2-all Finals tie]
"That's what we don't want to happen," Austria further quipped about the overconfidence factor.
However, he insisted that it was not the main reason why SMB fell prey to TNT.
"The big impact is our big men getting into foul trouble," Austria said.
Center Junemar Fajardo got two quick fouls in the first quarter and eventually fouled out with 2:02 left in the game.
Import Charles Rhodes, on the other hand, would be able to keep his fouls at check despite getting four after three quarters, but he would be taken out of the ballgame as well after incurring two technical fouls, the last off a second motion after disliking a foul from Ryan Reyes with barely a minute left."
"We have a big problem if they're in foul trouble because [Joshua] Smith can really dominate the shaded area. Tonight, at will, nakaka-score siya," Austria further said, referring to Smith's impressive outing.
Austria then commended Coach Nash Racela for the KaTropa's adjustments, saying, "They have a good adjustment for this game, because for the first time, they changed their starters. Their adjustment is effective for them."
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