SAN Miguel and TnT Katropa take their rivalry up north as the two powerhouse teams clash in the PBA Governors Cup road game on Saturday in Calasiao, Pangasinan.
The Katropa and Beermen enter the 5 p.m. Petron Saturday Special game at the Calasiao Sports Complex both aiming to book the crucial win as they try to bolster their respective bids for a berth in the quarterfinals.
Both champion teams are within striking distance, with TnT holding a better record at 4-4 compared to the 3-4 slate of San Miguel.
The Katropa however, are on a three-game winning run, two of them since import Marqus Blakely came on board.
While the Beermen had enough success slowing down import Eugene Phelps in their 117-100 drubbing of Phoenix Fuel Masters last week, coach Leo Austria said the team definitely has its hands full this time trying to contain Blakely.
The good thing with Blakely for us is that he’s not as powerful as Phelps and most of his game is on the perimeter,” said Austria.
“But his work ethic is something that (TnT) has to bank on dahil alam naman natin na he’s a team player, and that’s something that could make a team to have a good chemistry.”
While the Beermen have not played for a week, TnT has been on a break for 20 days, its last outing coming on Sept. 30 when they came from behind to nip NorthPort, 104-102.
In order to keep in shape, the Katropa went out-of-town during that stretch and held a team building under new coach Bong Ravena and consultant Mark Dickel.
Austria said the long rest could work on TnT either way.
“I know there’s a lot of energy in them,” he said. “Pero sana hindi pa nila makuha ang timing nila.”