ONE of the teams desperately trying to snap out of their funk is sure to do so when Converge and Terrafirma collide at 3p.m. on Wednesday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The FiberXers are aiming to cut short a two-game slide and improve to an even 2-2 record while the Dyip are determined to finally crash the win-column on this their fourth try.
Adding to the combatants' sense of urgency is the fact that they are in for some rougher roads ahead.
Converge next takes on San Miguel Beer followed by encounters with Barangay Ginebra and NLEX, while Terrafirma has surprising Blackwater, TNT and Ginebra as its next opponents.
Their immediate task should be tough enough.
An 83-86 heartbreaker to the Tropang Giga two Sundays ago seemed to have drained some spirit out of the FiberXers as they played with little of their usual energy and verve in getting walloped by the Meralco Bolts to the tune of 74-90 last Thursday.
For its part, Terrafirma failed to adjust quickly to the absence of the injured Isaac Go (knee), Ed Daquioag (leg) and Eric Camson (back), falling to Phoenix Super LPG, 74-97, last Friday.
"Maganda idinepensa sa amin ng Phoenix and at the same time medyo inalat," was how Dyip coach Johnedel Cardel put it.
While Go and Daquioag are both out for the season, Camson is expected to return to action and lend his veteran presence.
Juami Tiongson, held by the Phoenix defense to nine points, 12 below his average, is also expected to bounce back big-time along with Joshua Munzon, who scored just six points in just less than 19 minutes against the Fuel Masters.
"Sana kung ano pini-preach naming mga coaches na play within the system, move the ball, trust your teammates, gawin nila," said Cardel. "Lalo na iyan na pabigat na ng pabigat mga kalaban."
Converge also has players who are all fired up, foremost of whom are Jeron Teng and Maverick Ahanmisi, who combined for only 13 points against the Bolts. Abu Tratter is also expected to finally see action. (NC)