ICYMI: Kia finally Snapped its 16-Game Losing Streak

Ricky Dandan
(Photo by the PBA Media Bureau)

One factor enabled the Picanto to clinch their first win in 8 months

Everybody hates losing and that’s something we cannot deny not just in sports but in life in general. However, it has been said that whenever you lose in anything whether it’s a basketball game or you’ve miserably failed your examinations in school, you will learn something from the mistakes which led to that specific setback and will help you improve the next time around. But, as they say, if you keep on committing the same set of mistakes, then something is wrong with you.
That has been the case for the Kia Picanto. For 8 months, they have endured nothing but defeat. They came closest to a win against the NLEX Road Warriors to open the Philippine Cup but faltered late in the 4th quarter. Then, Chris Gavina reigned as coach, paving way for Ricky Dandan to be promoted as top tactician. However, that move didn’t have any effect as Kia dropped its two games since Dandan took over. Then, came the game against the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, a game had the Picanto lost, would have made them own the second-longest losing streak in the history of the PBA.
Fortunately, losing’s over for the Kia Picanto, for now, as they scored 32 points in the pivotal 3rd quarter en route to a 98-94 win over the inconsistent Elasto Painters. Given how close the final score was, Ricky Dandan could only release a sigh of relief. After all, it was a game that was filled with tension and ejections plus the fact that two Kia players were ejected in the second quarter. Still, Kia has other players on its roster who produced notable good numbers to get over the hump, finally.
But if you will ask Ricky Dandan, there was one factor that pushed Kia to their first win of the season: they had no choice but to keep going, dig deep and look for positive things that kept them going. The coach also added that he was overall happy with the fact that his team was able to keep their composure and played for 48 minutes- the first time this season that they actually did that.

Conclusion

With their first win already in the bag, Ricky Dandan is hoping that the Kia Picanto can build up their confidence from beating a team like Rain or Shine and start gaining more W. However, with a game against the Meralco Bolts coming up this Wednesday, Kia needs all of its players aboard because Meralco has been to the Governors’ Cup Finals, twice. And despite its struggles, Meralco is still better-coached. But who knows? Kia has already one game so why stop there, right?  

Kia Still Winless in 4 Games, Loses by 37 to Alaska

Alaska Aces
(Photo by the PBA Media Bureau)

Kia absorbs 16th straight defeat- the third-longest losing streak in the PBA

Ugly. That’s probably the best adjective you can describe the early goings of the 43rd season of the PBA for the Kia Picanto. For starters, they threw away their future by trading the top pick who happened to be Christian Standhardinger. Then, just two defeats into the new season, Chris Gavina resigned which promoted Ricky Dandan as the new head coach. Unfortunately, that move didn’t do the Picanto any good as Kia dropped their first game under a new coach.
Things weren’t about to get better any time soon for the Kia Picanto as they sustained one of their worst losses in franchise history as they got blown out anew, this time by the Alaska Aces, 102-65. This, folks, is Kia’s 4th straight defeat and 16th consecutive since last season’s Commissioner’s Cup.  This is also Kia’s third consecutive blown-out loss and they were defeated by a margin of 35 points per game.
What were the things that doomed Kia anew? Below are those nasty things:

5 Points in the Third Quarter

To begin with, Kia was actually in the game after the first quarter as they held a 21-20 to end the quarter. They also managed to keep the score as close as possible despite being down, 49-34 at the halftime break. But when the third quarter came along, that’s when things went further south for Kia as they would have gone scoreless if not to Eric Camson, Rashawn McCarthy and Reden Celda who combined for all of Kia’s 5 points in the 3rd quarter. And that’s the reason why Alaska won the game.

Alaska’s Pressing Defense Worked to Perfection

Alaska has been feared despite their 2-2 record for their suffocating pressing defense and it worked to the max against the Picanto. The Aces only allowed Kia to make 32% of their attempts, 34% from the two-point area and 30% from the three-point territory. They also forced 29 turnovers from Kia which the Aces converted to 32 points on the other end.

Conclusion

Will Kia’s streak break Ginebra’s losing streak which reached 17 back in the 1995 Commissioner’s Cup? They will. Probably. Especially if they continue to play the way they have been playing in their last 3 games.

Magnolia Aiming to be Extra Careful with Winless Kia

(Photo by the PBA Media Bureau)

Statistically, the Magnolia Hotshots are the better team heading into their first game of the year against the team which has yet to win a single game this conference, the Kia Picanto. 
Even though they are heavily favored to handle the Picanto their 3rd straight defeat this afternoon, the Hotshots, specifically Coach Chito Victolero has said it that they are aiming to be extra careful against the still winless Picanto who have a new coach and a new system to follow. 
After all, Ricky Dandan, who took over following the resignation of Chris Gavina, aims to follow Joe Lipa’s ways of the playing conventional style of basketball. And if you’re fortunate enough to witness Joe Lipa coach during his heydays, then you know Magnolia is up against a much different team.
After bowing down to the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings on Christmas Day, the Magnolia Hotshots are gunning for their second win in 3 games as the 16-day hiatus in between games hopefully enabled injured stars to heal from their injuries, specifically Jio Jalalon who has just been cleared to play. In addition to this, Victolero also hopes that PJ Simon and Marc Pingris to come out better after struggling against Ginebra. If the stars of Magnolia can pound early on, chances are Kia is already in a big trouble.
On the other hand, Ricky Dandan only had 7 practices with the Picanto after taking over at the helm. Installing a new system is among his priorities early on but according to the former head coach of the UP Fighting Maroons in the UAAP, his number 1 focus, for now, is to make sure that the Picanto becomes a solidified team before they can start moving forward.

Conclusion

It’s good that Chito Victolero and his boys aren’t taking the Picanto for granted as it will be a big embarrassment if they are to lose to Kia today. After all, who would want to be defeated by the worst team in the league right now?
On the other hand, a 0-2 record doesn’t really translate to the amount of talent that Kia. After all, they almost beat the NLEX Road Warriors back in their first game of the new a season. ALMOST. Having said this, Chito Victolero is definitely correct in saying that Kia is indeed, a very dangerous team. 

Chris Gavina Resigns as Kia’s Head Coach

Chris Gavina Resigns as Kia's Head Coach

Ricky Dandan takes over coaching duties

Gavina’s resignation came after Kia’ 23-point loss to Phoenix.
The Kia Picanto entered the 43rd season of the PBA fresh from a winless campaign during the 2016 Governors’ Cup. Don’t forget that they also traded their right to pick the top pick in the draft which eventually happened to be the Filipino-German and Gilas big man, Christian Standhardinger. Despite trading their potential future star, the Picanto managed to pose a threat against the NLEX Road Warriors in their season-opener before losing, 119-115. However, their next game,e against the Phoenix Fuel Masters was something that hit them the most as it was a 23-point blowout loss, their 14th straight loss.

Just when things couldn’t get any better for the Picanto, Chris Gavina will start 2018 without a team to coach as he submitted his resignation yesterday- a move that was confirmed by Joe Lipa, the team’s general manager. Ironically, Gavina’s resignation came just two days after Kia announced that he was the team’s head coach. Was.

Gavina started as Manny Pacquiao’s deputy coach- all while the playing coach wasn’t on the court. Despite the stockpile of losses, we can’t argue with the fact that Chris Gavina did his job, leading Kia to its only playoff appearance so far back in 2016 before losing to the Meralco Bolts.

Ricky Dandan is set to take over at the helm in the next games of Kia. Will he be the permanent coach or only in an interim capacity will be something that we’ll have to wait and see.

Conclusion

Will Chris Gavina’s resignation bring good things to the still winless Kia Picanto? It depends on the adjustments that will be made come the games. After all, Kia still has a bunch of quality players who can score at will and lead the team to wins. They just need to rediscover how they started 4-0 like they did back in the 2016 Governors’ Cup under Chris Gavina.

Take a look at our last conversation with Chris Gavina