WITH only four games left to be played on two game days in the final stretch of the 2015 PBA Governors Cup eliminations, three teams are still battling it out for the eighth and last ticket to the eight-team conference playoffs, another three teams are still in the hunt for the fourth and last twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals, and only two teams have already been eliminated.
The last four games in the elims in the next two days at the Big Dome are:
Tuesday, June 23 ‘15 (Smart Araneta Coliseum)
4:15 p.m. GlobalPort vs. Alaska
7:00 p.m. Blackwater vs. Star
Wednesday, June 24 ‘15 (Smart Araneta Coliseum)
4:15 p.m. Kia vs. Meralco
7:00 p.m. NLEX vs. Barangay Ginebra
The current team standings through last Sunday’s games are:
+San Miguel Beer 8-3
+Rain or Shine 7-4
* GlobalPort 6-4
* Barako Bull 6-5
Talk ‘N Text 5-6
Brgy. Ginebra 4-6
+ w/ twice-to-beat advantage in quarterfinals
* assured of at least a quarterfinal berth
First, remember that there will be no more playoffs to determine ties at No. 4 and No. 8 and all ties will be resolved via the winner-over-the-other rule (for ties between two teams) or the PBA quotient system (for ties involving three or more teams).
Alaska is already a lock at No. 1 even if it loses to GlobalPort since the Aces won over the sure-No. 2-seed Beermen just last Saturday 82-77 in Panabo City, Davao del Norte last Saturday.
They Said It!
“Although TNT fan ako mas gusto ko KIA na lang. Para players like Slaughter, Aguilar, Castro, RDO will have enough time to rest. Malapit na preparation for Gilas eh!" Facebook reader Kelvin Yao
That means it’s a no-bearing game for the Aces against the Batang Pier although Alaska can still want to enter the playoffs on a winning note.
A win by GlobalPort will automatically give it the fourth and last twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals.
If the Batang Pier lose, they automatically slide to No. 5 and No. 4 - along with the twice-to-win advantage - in the QFs will go to either defending champion Star if it wins over Blackwater, or Barako Bull if the Hotshots lose to the Elite.
Because of superior PBA quotients, Meralco and Star are already all but assured of places in the playoffs even with their 5-5 records. In fact, the Hotshots, as earlier mentioned, even have a shot at a Top Four finish.
That means only Talk ‘N Text, Kia and Barangay Ginebra are in a fierce slugfest for the eighth and last playoff berth.
The Tropang Texters are hoping sister team Meralco beats Kia in order to get a free ride to the playoffs. Talk ‘N Text should’ve already gotten it as early as last Sunday but the Bolts lost to Rain or Shine, 96-89, despite leading by as much as 13 points in the first period and by 10 at halftime.
If Meralco loses to Kia, the Tropang Texters will be out of the conference playoffs for the first time in two seasons - and only the second time in the last 16 conferences.
The Carnival’s hopes of advancing to a first-ever playoffs appearance in franchise history hinge on a win over Meralco and Barangay Ginebra losing to NLEX.
If Kia wins and Ginebra also wins, the Carnival may need to win by a certain huge margin over the Bolts to displace the Kings at No. 8.
Which means Barangay Ginebra badly needs to beat NLEX to survive and will also need to pray for a Kia win over Meralco to boost its chances.
By the way, the quarterfinal pairings in the first round of the playoffs are:
1. (Alaska) vs. 8
2. (San Miguel Beer) vs. 7
3. (Rain or Shine) vs. 6
4. vs. 5;
with the Top 4 teams the twice-to-beat advantages over their foes.
Here are the unofficial last 16 scenarios going into the last four games and last two playdates of the conference eliminations: