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PBA: Star looks to catch leader

Games Today
(Smart Araneta)
4:15 p.m. – Mahindra vs Star
7 p.m. – GlobalPort vs Ginebra

* Win will tie Hotshots with Alaska Aces at 4-0

* Ginebra seeks to rebound from Davao debut loss

Star coach Chito Victolero is staking the team’s perfect 3-0 mark against his former team Mahindra today in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Having handled the Floodbusters in their early years in the league, Victolero challenged his players to give their all in their 4:15 clash knowing very well how dangerous the Floodbusters are.

“We know what this team can do, they won’t easily give up, malamangan sila binibigay pa din nila 100 percent nila, kung lamang sila, laro pa rin sila for 48 minutes,” said Victolero. “Kaya sabi ko sa mga players ko, we have to match the opposing team’s energy, intensity, kasi jan kilala ang Mahindra e. Nakapag-coach ako sa kanila so medyo alam ko kung paano sila.”

Though Victolero was reportedly bitter with the Mahindra management over his contract, he’s not taking the game personal.

“Exciting itong game na ito kaya paghahandaan namin ng maige kasi kailangan ng panalo, maiksi ang conference,” added Victolero.

A win would give Star a share of the lead with Alaska.

Clashing at 7 p.m. is Barangay Ginebra and GlobalPort with both teams looking to join the win column.

The Batang Pier dropped their first two games while the Kings lost their debut against the Phoenix Fuel Masters, 94-91, last Saturday in Davao City.

Hotshots import Tony Mitchell is averaging 23 points and 16 rebounds but his downside is that he easily gets into foul trouble because of his intensity.

“Yun siguro and dapat na maging adjustment namin,” said Victolero.

“Sobrang aggressive nya kasi on both ends, so minsan naso-sobrahan nau-uwi sa foul. So dapat medyo alaga sa foul.

Pero ayaw naman namin na bawasan niya yung pagiging aggressive niya, malaking bagay kasi yun para sa amin, na nakaka-sabay siya sa takbuhan on both ends,” he added.

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