FORMER MVP Mark Caguioa and the Barangay Ginebra Kings look to test the mettle of high-scoring freshman guard Terrence Romeo and the rookie-laden Globalport side when they clash in the PLDT myDSL-PBA Philippine Cup Thursday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Gin Kings (2-0) are looking to cement their grip on top of the standings against the Batang Pier (1-1), a team that is coming off a 114-100 victory over winless Air21 last weekend.
Gametime is at 8 p.m.
Romeo, the reigning UAAP MVP after the Globalport’s fifth overall rookie pick, has drawn comparisons with the 6-foot-1 Caguioa after firing 34 points against the Express in just his second game as a professional player.
Caguioa reiterated that he’s not yet over the hill, though he does expect the former Far Eastern University star to bring out his best against him and the rest of the Gin Kings.
“You got a guy named Romeo, he’s a very aggressive player, gusto niya rin magpakilala eh, pretty sure, he’ll bring his A-game against me,” said Caguioa, the 2011-12 PBA MVP.
The Gin Kings plastered the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers, 86-69, before routing Rain or Shine, 97-84, for a strong 2-0 start. Caguioa topscored for the Gin Kings with 22 points against the E-Painters.
Globaport’s big men will also have their hands full defending the post against Ginebra’s “Twin Towers” of Japeth Aguilar (18.0 ppg., 9.0 rpg and 3.5 bpg.) as well as rookie center Greg Slaughter (14.0 ppg. 13.0 rpg. and 2.5 bpg.).
Globalport veteran guard Solomon Mercado said they will have to find ways to limit Aguilar and Slaughter’s post plays.
“We’re not really looking at the match up of the backcourt, we’re just looking for the win. And we’re more worried about their big fellas,” Mercado said, who has taken the responsibility to mentor Romeo.