TNT active consultant Mark Dickel is not worried about the result of their first tune-up game for the coming PBA Philippine Cup which saw the KaTropa losing to the reigning UAAP champion Ateneo Blue Eagles.
The KaTropa suffered a 103-86 defeat against the Blue Eagles in their first tune-up game for the new PBA season on Saturday at the Moro Lorenzo Sports Center, but Dickel said the loss is not a cause for concern.
Dickel said the Blue Eagles are also a very good team that can pull off such a victory over a PBA team mainly because of how they play defense.
“We kept three or four guys out due to injury or whatever. But it’s good. Ateneo is really difficult to play against. They play defense and it doesn’t really matter who they have on the court. They are really organized,” said Dickel.
“And that’s the first game that we had. Nothing out of the ordinary of what I was totally expecting to happen,” he added.
Dwight Ramos had 22 points for the Blue Eagles in the win against the PBA squad, which didn’t have their top players seeing heavy minutes in the tune-up game.
Newly acquired player Poy Erram also didn’t play in the tuneup game as it was his first day with the KaTropa after the trade became official on Friday.
Dickel said TNT is still in the early stages of its preparation and said the loss will only make the KaTropa a better team moving forward. The TNT active consultant also said the team still has a lot of time to improve as it prepares for its first game against Phoenix Pulse on March 11.
“We will be better for that. We will watch film. We have a couple of weeks or eight or nine days until the next game that we have. It’s good. It’s a good first game,” said Dickel.