Games Today (Mall of Asia Arena)
5:45 p.m. – San Miguel Beer vs Globalport
8 p.m. – Barangay Ginebra vs Barako Bull
(Philsports Arena, Pasig City)
5:45 p.m. – Meralco vs Air21
8 p.m. – Alaska vs Rain or Shine
Manila, Philippines – Globalport, San Miguel Beer, Ginebra San Miguel and Barako Bull have one thing in common when they troop to the court tonight: all are eager to bounce back from their previous defeats.
Problem for them is that they will be going up against each other so expect a pair of exciting games in today’s PBA PLDT Home Telpad Governors’ Cup at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City.
The Kings, whose 102-90 loss to Grand Slam-seeking San Mig Super Coffee last Sunday snapped their three-game winning run, collide with the Energy Cola at 8 p.m. with the latter determined to upset the Jeff Cariaso-mentored Ginebra.
With a 1-4 record, Barako has to exert extra effort to avoid early elimination in the season-ending conference since each team will have to play only nine games in the elims.
The Batang Pier are also in the same boat with the Energy Cola as they fell into a 1-3 record following a stinging 92-82 loss to the Mixers.
That also put the Batang Pier of businessman Mikee Romero in a must-win situation when they clash with the Beermen at 5:45 p.m.
A day after blowing several 20-point leads over the defending champions, Globalport representative Erick Arejola was still in a stage of shock.
“I don’t know what hit us. It could be one of our biggest wins had we managed to sustain our sharpness,” said Arejola. “I just hope our players will learn from their mistakes.”
Globalport new import Diow Lowhorn churned out the numbers expected from him on his debut but the locals became anemic in the payoff period.
Lowhorn scattered 33 points the last time, but more than his firepower, he has to help coach Pido Jarencio motivate his players to play smartly in both ends.
“I’m looking for more consistency, playing good defense and flow of offense,” Jarencio said.
“We also want to have a strong finish, which we didn’t do in our last two games.”
The Beermen suffered a 103-97 defeat to Talk ’N Text, 103-97, last Saturday, a defeat that also ended their own win streak to three games. They now have a 3-2 mark.
Still, the Beermen are favored over the Batang Pier.
The setback relegated the Kings into a tie for second to fourth places with the Air21 Express and the Texters at 3-1, just half a game behind the Mixers’ 4-1 record.
Cariaso took their loss in stride, saying they do not dwell on the past as they have to prepare for their next game.
“We are playing against a superb import in Eric Wise. He has proven to be an ultimate reliable scorer. This team can easily be 4-1. They are a tough, experienced team,” said Cariaso.
Barako Bull has dropped its previous game against Rain or Shine, 96-93. It was the team’s fourth straight defeat under new mentor Siot Tanquingcen after winning its first assignment this conference, a 95-94 win against Meralco.
The Energy Cola are tied with the Bolts at 1-4. (Waylon Galvez)