Games Today (JCGSO Gym)
2 p.m. – NU-BDO vs Cagayan Valley
4 p.m. – NLEX vs Cebuana Lhuillier
Manila, Philippines – Back to its dominating form, defending champion NLEX shoots for its sixth straight win when it collides with slumping Cebuana Lhuillier today in the PBA D-League Aspirant’s Cup at the JCGSO gym in Cubao, Quezon City.
If the team’s vengeful 103-86 victory over Blackwater Sports would be used as a gauge then the Road Warriors are in for a trouble-free victory in their 4 p.m. tussle.
In that game, the Road Warriors battled back from a 15-point third quarter deficit to hand the Elite another stinging defeat – their fourth in 10 starts.
The Road Warriors, on the other hand, improved to 8-1, just two games behind leagueleading Big Chill.
“We’re just happy we won (over Blackwater) and gave them what they gave to us in the finals (last conference) but we just have to continue on raising the bar,” NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez said.
The scary thing about NLEX is that you don’t know who will be the team’s hatchet man for the day. The last time was former Letran star Kevin Alas, who sizzled with 23 points.
“We all know what Kevin can do, in the open court he’s one of the best players but our energy starts with our defense,” Fernandez said.
Prior to Alas’ explosion, Garvo Lanete and Ronald Pascual almost alternated in leading the team’s onslaught.
For sure, that will pose another problem for coach Boycie Zamar and the Gems (4-5) whose playoff hopes are fast fading.
Cebuana had the perfect opportunity to stay in the hunt for the top six but dropped a crucial 82-70 decision against Jumbo Plastic last Thursday.
With them facing the defending champions, things could just go worse for the UE-backed squad especially if they have to deal with a squad as loaded as the Road Warriors.
In the first game, Cagayan Valley (7-3) will be playing its first game of the year when it takes on National University-BDO (2-7).
The last time they saw action was when they absorbed an 89-75 loss to Big Chill on Dec. 12 last year.
The Bulldogs, on the other hand, are coming off an inspiring 83-81 win over Wangs Basketball last week. (Christian Jacinto)