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PBA: TNT guns for share of lead

Rafi Reavis of Purefoods Star shoots past Romeo Travis of the Alaska Aces. PHOTO BY ERNIE U. SARMIENTO May 27, 2015

Games Today (Smart Araneta)
4:15 p.m. – Blackwater vs Meralco
7 p.m. – Talk ’N Text vs Globalport

Game Tomorrow (Angeles City, Pampanga)
5 p.m. – Kia vs Star

With a complete roster that captured the Commissioner’s Cup championship, Talk ’N Text shoots for a share of the lead when it takes on Globalport in the season-ending PBA Governors’ Cup today at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Tropang Texters (3-1) will be aiming for their third consecutive win as they battle at 7 p.m. the Batang Pier (3-2) – a team that dropped a game in Dubai a week back against Rain or Shine.

Meralco (2-3), meanwhile, meets expansion team Blackwater (1-4) at 4:15 p.m.

Currently on top of the standings are Alaska and Barako Bull with similar 4-1 records.

The last time TNT played, Jayson Castro rejoined the team after missing the first three matches to rest after a grueling championship series last conference against the Elasto Painters.

Castro, the Best Player of the Conference during the Commissioner’s Cup, collected 19 points in a 108-89 win over the Road Warriors last Tuesday.

Prior to Talk ’N Text’s encounter with NLEX, Ranidel de Ocampo made his conference debut after missing the first two games due to a right knee injury and had 13 points in a 104-103 win against Alaska last May 18.

TNT coach Jong Uichico said that having the two back poses a “good problem” considering that he now has to balance the playing time for his star-studded squad that includes versatile import Steffphon Pettigrew and Asian reinforcement Osama Daghles.

“The roster is complete,” said Uichico, whose team won the Commissioner’s Cup with a thrilling double overtime Game 7 victory (121-119) against Rain or Shine exactly a month ago.

“It’s harder, but easier. Harder because we’ll be dividing the (playing) minutes. Well… easy because we’re complete now. Hopefully we get the right rotations,” added Uichico.

Globalport, on the other hand, is looking to bounce back from a painful 119-112 setback to ROS last Thursday when the team clashed in the first game of a two-day Dubai schedule.

In that defeat, sophomore guard Terrence Romeo fired a career-best 40 points, while new import Jarrid Famous debuted with 26 points and 16 rebounds but went 9-of-23 from the field and had a game high six turnovers.

Globalport coach Pido Jarenco is confident, however, that they can match up well against TNT.

“Siyempre champion team yang Talk ’N Text, isa sa paborito this conference, pero malaki naman ang tiwala natin na kaya namin. Pero kailangan kami mag-execute ng tama and focus sa defense,” said Jarencio.

With rookie guard Stanley Pringle still a doubtful starter, Romeo, Famous, who replaced Steve Thomas, Asian import Omar Krayem and Ronjay Buenafe will again lead the team’s attack against TNT.