We CAN beat Korea and Japan - this is on neutral territory. Rest assured those two countries can't do what some people say "cheat". But can Powerade Team Pilipinas actually win? In 2007 Jones Cup the very beatable UNIVERSITY GAMES representative of Japan beat us after leading almost 3/4 of the game. Yes, these two teams are beatable but our team shouldn't fall on complacency and overconfidence as accidents do happen.
It is imperative that we win all our games in Group B and get a 3 -0 record. As per Fiba tournament format the victory over eliminated team will be excluded so it will appear as 2-0 in the crossover playoffs. Our opponents in the next round are tougher so Powerade Team Pilipinas must have some buffer by piling up wins.
These are the teams the Nationals will likely face on the crossover playoffs
From Group A
Group A-B combined will form Group E in the crossover players
Group E - the battle is win all games and avoid China & Lebanon
Group F ( C& D groups combined)
possible ranking after crossover
Powerade Team Pilipinas will have to scout these teams already:
Sri Lanka ( to avoid surprise)
In the quarterfinals, everything will be harder then on.
If we finish first: we face Kazakhstan - no easy task 0-4 after 1998 Bangkok Asiad
If we finish 2nd: Jordan or Lebanon
3rd: Jordan or Lebanon
4th: China and bye-bye
To avoid China in the semis, we should get into 1st and 2nd place in Group E.
Better lower your expectations, since PBA players tend to fold up under pressure. There's no greater pressure than the Fiba-Asia Championship. They aren't Manny Pacquiao our basketball players fold under pressure. So its better TO HOPE FOR THE BEST BUT prepare for the worst.
I remember the anguish of Chino Trinidad in the 2007 Fiba-Asia Championship. His frustration is with our players inability to adjust to the international game. Maybe he should start on his own turf the PBL - and let them play Fiba rules - that's better than whining on national TV. They will still have that same problem again. Why? Lack of international exposure and difference between PBA and International rules - it is still present. Sad. Smart people don't need to be told twice or make the same mistake again.
Some people will say, " Be grateful that PBA is representing the country. It is not their responsibility." My take is if you want to represent your country at least prepare hard and properly. Just imagine if all leagues in the world believe it is NOT their job to play for their country. Try telling that to Ricky Rubio, Fadi El Khatib, Bahraimi and others and they'll probably laugh in your FACE.