Games Today (Ynares Arena, Pasig City)
12 nn – Hapee vs AMA
2 p.m. – Jumbo Plastic vs Cebuana Lhuillier
4 p.m. – MJM M-Builders vs Tanduay Light
Manila, Philippines – Jumbo Plastic’s scrambling victory last Thursday, apparently, alarmed coach Steveson Tiu. So he’s gathering his troops back to the drawing board.
Tiu is convinced the Giants need a quick fix and hopefully they would be a lot better for Monday’s matchup against Cebuana Lhuillier as the two teams dispute the solo lead in the PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup. Game time is 2 o’clock.
The other games pit Hapee against fellow newcomer AMA University at 12 noon and Tanduay Light against MJM Builders at 4 p.m.
The Giants played catch up for most part of their season opener against newcomer Bread Story and needed to summon their experience in the fourth quarter to escape with a 79-74 come-from-behind victory.
“We played individually and forgot the team concept. We also played lousy on defense. Talagang sa experience lang nagkatalo,” Tiu observed.
“Hopefully, we can make the adjustments with the short time we have. If we play they we did (against Bread Story) we’re in big trouble.”
The Giants will against be without forward Jan Colina, out with a shoulder injury.
Cebuana Lhuillier opened its campaign with an 89-70 blowout win against newcomer Racal Motors. But Boycie Zamar, the Gems’ coach, knows their next assignment would not be as easy.
“They are (Giants) a deep team. So we have to take one game at a time,” Zamar said.
With an overhauled lineup, Zamar hoped the Gems would improve on its standings last conference. “ So we have to get better every practice, every possession, every game.”
The Gems will again be without injured forward Kevin Ferrer and 6-7 center Norberto Torres, who is barred from playing pending the completion his documents required for Fil-foreign players.
Hapee is fancied to be the team to be with its star-studded roster built and a wealth of big man lead by the 6-foot-9 Ola Adeogun. Also in the team are shooters Garvo Lanete, Bobby Ray Parks and Chris Newsome.
Against a Titans team that is still feeling its way in the league, the Fresh Fighters should encounter little trouble. AMA is coming off a 78-96 beating against Wangs Basketball l on opening day last week.
In contrast, the Tanduay Light-MJM Builders game promises to be a thriller.