THE ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) will crown a new champion by the end of the day.
San Miguel will host the Indonesia Warriors in Game 3 of the final at the Ynares Sports Arena in the Philippines.
SMB won Game 1 after edging the Warriors 86-83 on their home floor a fortnight ago.
With their backs against the wall, the Warriors dominated Game 2, blowing SMB away with an 81-61 win at the Mahaka Square Jakarta.
Despite the big win margin and having swung the momentum on their side, Warriors head coach Todd Purves is not ready to start celebrating yet.
"I expect the game to go down to the wire. Well, we are going to have to play our best basketball of the year to get a win," said Purves.
One of the key factors in the Game 2 victory is due to their bench output - 24 points. They were non-existent in Game 1 with only seven points.
Purves, who was named the coach of the year, is looking to give his bench more minutes to produce once again.
"We've made some minor adjustments; including keeping some fresh legs down the stretch. We need the full 40 minutes to beat them because in Game 1, we played a good 35 minute and lost the game," said the Warriors head coach.
SMB head coach, Bobby Parks, hopes that the Game 2 loss will be a wakeup call for his team and that they will bounce back with better execution.
"Sometimes when you lose by three, it's not a wakeup call to the players who might think 'oh that was close and we could have still won'," said Parks.
"But when you get drubbed like this, 20 points, now there is a tendency for pride to come into play and you have to bounce back because they really beat us, we were out of the game totally," he added
"We've got to bounce back, we have no choice, I've got confidence in these guys. The most important thing is we execute and follow the game plan," continued Parks.
SMB will have to take care of the boards after being outrebounded 37-21 in Game 2.
This is also the first time that the champion had to decided by a decisive game with the past two seasons seeing sweeps in the final.
The game tips off at 4pm local time.
The Brunei Times
Saturday, June 30, 2012
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