(Photo by the PBA Media Bureau)
GregZilla is expected to return to action against the slumping NLEX Road Warriors
Ever since Greg Slaughter started missing games due to his hamstring injury, the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings seemed lost in their center's absence as they dropped their games against the Alaska Aces, Phoenix Fuel Masters before getting a much-needed, confidence-boosting victory against the no-longer league-leading San Miguel Beermen. Why? Slaughter averaged 20 points and 10 rebounds in the first three games of the new season. So we could see understand why Tim Cone is happier now that the franchise center has returned to practice.
Here's a fair warning to the NLEX Road Warriors whom Ginebra will play against tonight: Greg Slaughter will play. According to Tim Cone, he had the option to let Slaughter play against San Miguel but opted not to because it wasn't the smart thing to do in the long run. Smart decision by a champion coach, right?
If you have seen the Gin Kings play against June Mar Fajardo and company, you would think that Ginebra didn't need Slaughter to slaughter defenders on the inside as the Gin Kings got notable contributions from Jervy Cruz, Japeth Aguilar and Raymond Aguilar who helped in containing Fajardo in the second half especially when Japeth was on the bench due to foul trouble.
If Greg Slaughter's return is a good news for Ginebra and for their legions of fans, it's definitely a bad news for the NLEX Road Warriors who, after starting the season with 2 consecutive victories, are now on a 4-game losing streak. According to NLEX Coach Yeng Guiao, they know for a fact that they will need to make more in-game adjustments especially after seeing Ginebra slugged it out against the Beermen WITHOUT Greg Slaughter and Joe Devance.
Unless Kiefer Ravena and the rest of the NLEX Road Warriors can find a way to get their rhythm back against the giants of Ginebra, they won't stand a chance. But who knows? Yeng Guiao said that his team is approaching the game later with a positive attitude as he has been seeing determination and effort from his players during their recent practices.