Barangay Ginebra San Miguel will be eyeing for quarterfinals berth as it clashes against Star today in the Philippine Basketball Association Season 42 Governors’ Cup at the Araneta Coliseum.
Holding a 5-1 win-loss record after routing Phoenix 105-92 last Wednesday, Ginebra is bracing for a high-speed game against Star.
“There’s always a buzz in the air at practice when we’re preparing for the Manila Classico. It’s an exciting time. It’s especially true now since both teams are on equal footing and playing good basketball. It will be a classic battle of our size versus their quickness,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone.
“The winner will be in good shape for the race to top four,” added Cone, who is expected to lean on import Justin Brownlee who is averaging 21.3 points, 11.3 rebounds and five assists in six games together with big men Japeth Aguilar, Greg Slaughter and Joe Devance.
After a 4-0 start, the Hotshots suffered their first defeat to Rain or Shine, 88-92, last Sunday. Star’s import Malcolm Hill is averaging 23.5 points and 12 rebounds in four games.
Coming off a 103-100 win over San Miguel Beer last Sunday, the Road Warriors are keen to improve their 6-2 win-loss record in their encounter against the Batang Pier in the 4:30 p.m. first game.
Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) is bent on snatching a twice-to-beat bonus in the quarterfinals, when it battles GlobalPort.
“Right now, we have six wins and I believe we’re already in the quarterfinals. With three games left, I think we need to win two of these three games to get a twice-to-beat advantage,” NLEX coach Yeng Guiao told The Manila Times.
“Otherwise, if we lose to GlobalPort, we must win our last two games to get the twice-to-beat bonus,” added Guiao, referring to NLEX’s remaining assignments namely TNT and Star, should they hurdle past GlobalPort. “The magic number is eight wins in order to get a twice-to-beat bonus.”
Import Aaron Fuller who is averaging 23.6 points and 18.8 rebounds in eight games, is expected to lead the Road Warriors.
GlobalPort is ready for collision led by the formidable trio of guard Terrence Romeo, Stanley Pringle and import Murphy Holloway.
Romeo is GlobalPort’s leading scorer with 22.6 points average in five games, while Pringle is averaging 20.8 points and 6.5 rebounds in six games. Holloway, on the other hand, is averaging 28.6 points, 20.4 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 2.8 blocks in five games.
GlobalPort, holding a 3-3 win-loss record, just notched a morale-boosting 119-112 triumph over sister team TNT last Friday.
“Hopefully, we can sustain this win on Sunday when we play against NLEX,” said GlobalPort coach Franz Pumaren.