Manila, Philippines – Globalport goes for a franchise-record third straight victory while Ginebra tries to follow-up its thrilling come-from-behind win the last time as the PLDT myDSL PBA Philippine Cup resumes today at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Coming off an inspiring 90-88 win over Rain or Shine, the Batang Pier tangle with the Alaska Aces at 5:45 p.m. before the Kings collide with the Barako Bull Energy at 8 p.m.
Globalport’s bid for a third straight victory hinges largely on veterans Sol Mercado and Jay Washington – considered as the team’s 1-2 punch.
For the Kings, the man of the hour is Japeth Aguilar.
The Kings pulled of a 97-95 thriller over defending champion Talk ’N Text following Aguilar’s killer three-point shot that gave them their fifth win in six starts in the season-opening tournament.
Coach Ato Agustin is hoping the 6-foot-9 Aguilar, the other half of the team’s “Twin Towers,” will pun another big show.
Agustin is also pinning his hope on Aguilar’s frontcourt buddy Greg Slaughter, Mark Caguioa and LA Tenorio.
Both Mercado and Washington have brought their A-game during the Batang Pier’s last two games – against Meralco and ROS – and are determined to keep the momentum going as they try to give owner Mikee Romero a third straight win.
The 5-foot-11 Mercado torched his former teams with MVP-type figures, firing 33 points aside from posting nine rebounds and five assists. In their game against the Painters, he collected 20 points and seven assists.
Mercado began his pro career with Rain or Shine in the 2008-09 season before he was dealt to Meralco in 2011. The Bolts traded him last season to the Batang Pier.
On the other hand, the 6-foot-7 Washington had 27 points and 10 rebounds against Meralco before compiling 20 points and 13 boards against Rain or Shine.
Also playing consistent is rookie guard RR Garcia, who is averaging 12.5 points.
Rotating the ball and finding the hot hands, according to Mercado, could be the key to another win for the Batang Pier. “In our two wins, it’s all about sharing the ball, looking for the best scoring option,” Mercado said.
“We also have to follow our game plan, follow the system and protect the ball. We also have to play defense, make some stops. Alaska is a strong team. Their record doesn’t reflect what kind of team they are. (Waylon Galvez)