TALK ‘N Text aim for a share of the top spot when it battles Globalport Batang Pier while expansion team Blackwater face Meralco today in the 40th Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Governor’s Cup elimination round at the Araneta Coliseum.
A win by the Commissioner’s Cup champions Tropang Texters over Batang Pier at 7 p.m. would allow them to forge a three way tie at the top with Barako Bull and Alaska that are both bearing 4-1 records. Blackwater Elite hope to break away from the three-way tie at the bottom of the standing with a win over Meralco at 4:15 p.m.
Coach Jong Uichico’s Texters, whose lone loss was to Barako Bull, 87-100, on May 15, notched two straight victories following the return of Ranidel de Ocampo and Jayson Castro from injury. Even with the continued absence of Kevin Alas who’s nursing a foot injury, the presence of Asian import Sam Daghles, who averaged 10 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6.75 assists per game, boosted TNT’s firepower.
“Sam [Daghles] is a veteran point guard. His presence is good for me so that I can play two spots and not only point guard. He is like Jimmy Alapag, he involved all especially in the fast breaks. In that way, we can outrun our opponents,” said Castro.
Besides the Jordanian import Daghles, coach Uichico will also rely on 6’4 regular import Steffphon Pettigrew, who has an accumulated average of 27.25 points and 12 rebounds in four matches with the Tropang Texters.
Pettigrew and Daghles will be pitted against Batang Pier’s Jarrid Famous and Omar Krayem. The 6’11 Famous, who replaced Steve Thomas made his debut with 26 points and 16 rebounds in their 112-119 losing game against Rain or Shine in Dubai, United Arab Emirates last week. The 6’2 Palestinian Krayem averaged 13.6 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists in five games with Globalport.