TALK ‘N Text tries to get back on the winning track, while Meralco looks to get a win run going when the Texters and Bolts collide on Tuesday in the PBA Governors Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Texters sit in joint fifth at 3-2 after absorbing a 120-123 loss to GlobalPort last week. On the other hand, the Bolts are fresh from an 87-72 whipping of the woeful Blackwater Elite that put them in seventh spot at 3-3.
They clash at 7 p.m. match
Meralco coach Norman Black said no less than their A-game is needed to beat a powerhouse squad like Talk ‘N Text, which is now at full strength with the return of veteran stars Ranidel de Ocampo and Jayson Castro.
De Ocampo actually played a huge role in Talk ‘N Text’s 104-103 win over Alaska over a week ago, while Castro, the Commissioner’s Cup Best Player, is coming off a 34-point explosion against GlobalPort.
“It’s an important game for both teams, but it’s also an opportunity to move up in the standings and stay out of the bottom four,” said Black, whose team’s short frontcourt of Reynel Hugnatan, Danny Ildefonso, John Ferriols and new boy Kelly Nabong, will be battling Talk ‘N Text’s big men led by import Steffphon Pettigrew, Kelly Williams, De Ocampo Jay Washington and Harvey Carey.
“TNT is such a high quality team that we will have to bring our A-game to the court to get a win.”
Black said they will also need to come up with a solid defensive effort on the backcourt, with Castro, Jordanian import Sam Daghles and Larry Fonacier ready to provide the firepower from the three-point zone for TNT.
Andre Emmett, the 2015 NBA D-League All-Star MVP, along with Gary David will carry the scoring load for a Meralco side that hasn’t won two straight this conference.
TNT coach Jong Uichico said taking care of the basketball is foremost in the team’s mind.
“If we just did a good job taking care we of the ball better, we could have won the game against GlobalPort, so now, we’ve got to execute better against Talk ‘N Text,” said Uichico.