Monday, December 26, 2011

Jayjay Helterbrand Retirement Plan in the PBA

Jayjay Helterbrand is going to stay with Barangay Ginebra.

This was confirmed by the 2009 PBA Most Valuable Player in an exclusive interview with AKTV.
“Yes, I’m coming back. I can’t wait to get back next conference,” said Helterbrand, squelching speculations that he’s retiring to be with his daughters in the United States for good.

The veteran guard, who won four championships with Ginebra, signed a one-conference contract this season while contemplating retirement.  After the Gin Kings got swept by the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters last Wednesday in the Philippine Cup quarterfinals, fans began to wonder whether they’ve seen the last of Helterbrand, the other half of Ginebra’s dreaded Fast and Furious tandem along with Mark Caguioa.

“I’ve thought about it, especially during the time when I was consistently injured,” said Helterbrand. “But the biggest reason why I thought about retiring was because of my daughters, who are in the United States. I’ve sacrificed so many things, missing their birthdays, graduation and other important events while they’re growing up. So I thought that at my age now, maybe it’s time for me to make a sacrifice for them.”

“But my daughter told me that she’s willing to study here so that she can be with me and I can continue playing in the PBA.”

Helterbrand added that he’s feeling much better now and is in tip-top condition after an injury-plagued campaign the past two seasons.

“I opted for a one-conference contract to see if my body can respond to the schedule in the PBA.  Right now, I feel good.”
The return of Rudy Hatfield, according to Helterbrand, will be a big morale booster for the Gin Kings next conference. The power forward left the team midway through last season, but expressed his intention to come back to the team in time for the Commissioner’s Cup.
Helterbrand believes staying healthy is more crucial for Ginebra, instead of pursuing more roster changes.
“That’s the most important thing. If we can get free of injury, we can compete because we have a solid team.”
Right now, Helterbrand is banking on young forwards Rico Maierhofer and Allein Maliksi to become key contributors for the team. The pair was acquired by the Gin Kings in the middle of the Philippine Cup, but saw little action because of injuries.

“They’re the type of players we need, but they got injured as well.”

After getting swept by Rain or Shine, Helterbrand admits that there is still some bitterness with the way his team ended the tournament.

“I can’t wait to get back next conference because that’s not the way we want to end our campaign, but my hats off to Rain or Shine, they did a good job in the series.”

Because his one-conference pact has expired, Helterbrand is looking at a contract renewal after the holidays.
“Most probably by January 11 of next year during our first practice session. I cannot imagine myself wearing another jersey aside from Ginebra. I want to retire as a Gin King.”

Thursday, December 22, 2011

PBA Donates 1 Million Pesos to Cagayan De oro and Iligan Sendong Victims

PBA commissioner Chito Salud. InterAKTV/Niko Bolante

The Philippine Basketball Association on Wednesday announced the donation of P1 million to the Philippine Red Cross to help in the relief efforts for victims of tropical storm “Sendong” in the cities of Cagayan De Oro and Iligan.
The PBA Board of Governors ordered the release of the donation exclusively for the relief operations with the authorization from the team owners.
“The entire PBA family – the players and the team owners — is deeply saddened by the tragedy that hit our brothers in Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. The PBA will always be responsive to the needs of our less fortunate countrymen,” said PBA Commissioner Chito Salud in a statement.
The PBA has also allotted P100,000 to Gawad Kalinga to help repair the homes in the Gawad Kalinga Community that was affected by the tropical storm.
In a television interview, Salud noted that the ten member companies of the PBA already have their own efforts for helping victims, but still decided to make the donation as part of the PBA to show unity as an association.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) confirmed that, as of Wednesday, the death toll from flash floods triggered by the tropical storm stood at 1,010, while the missing stood at 46.
The number of affected population has also exceeded 500,000 or 65,608 families in Visayas and Mindanao, according to the NDRRMC.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ginebra vs Rain or Shine Result December 16 2011 PBA

Lee leads stunning Rain or Shine comeback over Ginebra

Rain or Shine showed the “never-say-die” spirit that Barangay Ginebra is known for.

The Elasto Painters clawed back from a 17-point deficit and banked on the heroics of rookie Paul Lee, Jeff Chan and Beau Belga to shock the Gin Kings, 112-105, in overtime and steal Game One of their best-of-three quarterfinal series Friday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

After trailing by 13 points entering the fourth quarter, Rain or Shine exploded for 43 points in the final 12 minutes and made the shots that mattered in the extra period to grab a 1-0 lead in the series.

JR Quinahan had an explosive game for the Painters with 21 points and 11 rebounds before fouling out late in the fourth quarter, while Lee added 19 points, six rebounds and six assists.

“We came back from the jaws of defeat. We thought it was a lost game. For a young team, we played with a lot of maturity in this game,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao.

“We hope this momentum will fuel us to the semis. We know Ginebra will come back. Pahirapan pa rin ito.”

Jeff Chan added 14 points, including a huge three-pointer that gave the Elasto Painters a 98-97 lead with 9.5 seconds left in regulation.

After a Mark Caguioa miss in the next play for the Gin Kings, Gabe Norwood split his free throws for a 99-97 lead. Willy Wilson sent the game to overtime with a under-the-basket shot that beat the buzzer.

Mike Cortez drew first blood in overtime with a jumper, but Belga hit a three-pointer and Lee completed a three-point play to give Rain or Shine a 105-101 lead with 2:17 remaining in overtime.

KG Canaleta responded with a jumper, but Norwood, Belga and Chan hit their free throws to stun Ginebra in their series opener.

Caguioa led the Gin Kings with 25 points while JC Intal, Canaleta and Enrico Villanueva added 16 points each.

Cortez had 14 points and 12 rebounds for Ginebra, which will try to send the series into a knockout affair on Wednesday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

The scores:

RAIN OR SHINE 112 – Quinahan 21, Lee 19, Chan 14, Arana 12, Rodriguez 11, Belga 9, Norwood 7, Tang 7, Cruz 5, Matias 4, Ibanes 3, Buenafe 0.

GINEBRA 105 – Caguioa 25, Intal 16, Canaleta 16, Villanueva 16, Cortez 15, Wilson W. 9, Labagala 4, Mamaril4, Maliksi 0, Wilson J. 0.

Quarters: 20-20, 33-44, 56-69, 99-99, 112-105


Petron vs Meralco Result in the PBA ( December 16, 2011)

Petron a win away from semis berth

MANILA, Philippines — For the first 36 minutes, Petron Blaze point guard Alex Cabagnot struggled with his shooting and he wasn’t as aggressive like in their previous games.

Cabagnot knows, however, how to take over.

The veteran guard collected 10 points in the final frame punctuated by back-to-back four-point plays to help the Boosters win over the Meralco Bolts, 91-84, in Game 1 of their best-of-three quarterfinal series in the PBA Philippine Cup last night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

Held to only four points in the first three quarters on 1-of-7 shooting from the perimeter, Cabagnot came to life in the fourth period when he completed two four-point plays, first when he was fouled by Chico Lanete on top of the key and the other was on Mark Isip on the right corner.

That allowed the Boosters to shatter a tight 68-all to 76-68 lead with 6:26 to play. Cabagnot’s assist on Rob Reyes put Petron up by 10 points, 78-68, with 5:58 left in the game.

The closest Meralco got was when Gabby Espinas made two free throws, 80-86, but Cabagnot again saved the day for Petron when he drove inside the shaded lane and scored a lay-up on counterpart Sol Mercado for 88-80 advantage, 1:30 remaining.

“I just got to keep my composure and be patient,” said Cabagnot, who also collected seven rebounds and eight assists.

Petron is now a win away from clinching a semifinal slot and arrange a best-of-seven semifinal showdown against defending champion Talk ’N Text, which clinched the first Final Four berth by winning over Barako Bull (81-79) last Wednesday.

The Boosters will face the Bolts in Game 2 on Wednesday at the Big Dome.

Petron forward Arwind Santos finished with double-double 19 points and 12 rebounds, while rookie forward Chris Lutz, who missed the team’s previous five games due to a hamstring injury, had 18 points. Rob Reyes and Dennis Miranda finished with 12 and 11 points, respectively.

“We’re able to execute our game plan especially on defense. We started a little flat, but we’re able to adjust in the second half,” said Petron mentor Ato Agustin. “It’s good that we took the opener, so we’re hoping that we can carry this win, the confidence we got, in Game 2.”

“As for Alex, well, he’s always a take-charge guy. He’s able to carry the team. He can defend, he can score and he can pass,” he added.

Mercado led Meralco with 18 points, while Espinas had 13 markers.

Meantime, the PBA, on behalf of its Board of Governors, will be donating P100,000 to Gawad Kalinga as its Christmas gift to its Alagang PBA partner.

The Scores:

PETRON 91 – Santos 19, Lutz 18, Cabagnot 14, Reyes 12, Miranda 11, Yeo 9, Sharma 4, Ildefonso 4, Doruelo 0, Baclao 0, Tugade 0.

MERALCO 84 – Mercado 18, Espinas 13, Cardona 12, Isip 10, Taulava 9, Yee 7, Borboran 6, Timberlake 2, Macapagal 2, Omolon 2, Hugnatan 2, Lanete 1.

Quarters: 17-22, 40-40, 63-60, 91-84.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

LLamados and Texters Eyeing for Semis in the PBA

Defending champion Talk 'N Text and B-MEG know they can't take Barako Bull and Powerade, respectively, for granted. Especially that their respective opponents' lives are on the line.

"There's very little margin of error," said Llamados coach Tim Cone.

And so the top two teams at the end of the PBA Philippine Cup eliminations go into Wednesday night's playoffs carrying with them the luxury of finishing their opponents right away in order to clinch the first two semifinals berths.

The Tropang Texters, the second seeded team, try to become the first one to advance in the Final Four as they clash with dangerous Barako Bull Energy, ranked seventh, in the curtain raiser of a scheduled twinbill at the Araneta Coliseum.

The top-ranked Llamados won't get their chance until the 7:30 p.m. main game, when they collide with No. 8 Powerade Tigers.

B-MEG enters its match against Powerade carrying an eight-game winning run, a stretch of brilliancy that enabled them to turn around a lackluster campaign in the season-opening tournament.

Cone however, is not taking the Tigers for granted.

"It's a short series so we will have to be sharp right at the get-go," Cone said. "Outside of Ginebra, Powerade has been the hot team down the stretch of the conference, so our assignment is especially tough. Their players are coming on strong and we've got some tough match-ups to deal with. Needless to say, we don’t want to go to a second game."

That Powerade will be coming out determined to pull off an upset is understandable.

The Tigers are playing in the quarterfinals for the first time since the 2007-08 season, an opportunity coach Bo Perasol said his team will definitely try to savor.

"We realize how well B-MEG had been playing both individually and as a team," Perasol said. "That knockout game will be a testament of how far we've grown as a team. What I’m sure of is that we won't back down to whatever challenge they will pose."

A 96-82 loss to Barangay Ginebra Sunday cost the Tropang Texters the top spot in the playoffs. Although the reigning champions finished with a similar 10-4 (win-loss) record with B-MEG, the Llamados claimed the top slot owing to a better quotient.

The setback and the fact that his team remains undermanned with some of his key players still nursing injuries, are what concerns coach Chot Reyes going into the 5:15 p.m. encounter.

"They beat us the last time plus we’re coming off a tough game Sunday night while they’re well-rested. This game wouldn't have been a problem if we're complete but now it's an issue because we’re decimated," said last year's Coach of the Year.

"We must find a way to match up with their bigs without Ali (Peek) and Ranidel while containing (Willie) Miller and (Dylan) Ababou in the perimeter," Reyes said.

The two teams met in the eliminations just once and Barako Bull owned the bragging rights against the defending champions, 100-86. — JVP, GMA News

source :

Sunday, December 11, 2011

PBA Philippine Cup Quarter Final Match Up

Here are the match ups in the upcoming quarter finals  starting on Wednesday on the PBA Philippine Cup

#1 B-MEG vs #8 Powerade

- Llamados with twice-to-beat advantage
- Series tips off on Wednesday, 7:30 p.m.

#2 Talk ‘N Text vs #7 Barako Bull

- Tropang Texters with twice-to-beat advantage
- Series tips off on Wednesday, 5:15 p.m.

#3 Petron Blaze vs #6 Meralco

- Best-of-three series
- Series tips off on Friday, 5:15 p.m.

#4 Ginebra vs #5 Rain or Shine

- Best-of-three series
- Series tips off on Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Final Placing in the PBA Determined in Talk and Text - Ginebra Tiff

Coaches Chot Reyes and Siot Tanquingcen insist they’re not yet done with their job in the elimination phase of the PBA Philippine Cup.

They say their teams need to get going and crank up for the playoffs.

The Tropang Texters and the Kings have this similar mindset as they square off Sunday night in the final game of the eliminations at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

“We’ll go all out to try get the win and gain momentum for the playoffs,” said Reyes whose TnT team is assured of a quarterfinals twice-to-beat advantage whatever happens in the 7:30 p.m. game.

“We need to keep playing. You don’t come into the game na nasaisip mo non-bearing na ito. Hindi pwede iyon. Somehow, it will carry over or create bad habits,” said coach Tanquingcen whose Ginebra Kings, on the other hand, are already guaranteed of a spot in the best-of-three quarters.

For final placing, Talk n Text is chasing top spot while Ginebra has a shot at third behind TnT and B-Meg. “We’re hoping Jared Dillinger and Ryan Reyes can play but that will be a game-time decision. Jimmy Alapag is the one that is surely out. Still, we’ll fight to win,” said Reyes. “We’ve achieved the first step of avoiding the top seed or the second seed. Nonetheless, we’ll continue to play hard and see where we fall,” said Tanquingcen.

Final placing will be determined after Sunday’s twinbill which features Rain or Shine against Alaska in the other game.

If Talk n Text beats Ginebra, the Texters emerge the elims topnotchers and they play the eighth-seeded Powerade Tigers in the quarters.
If they lose, the Texters settle for second place and face the seventh-seeded Barako Bull Energy.

Whichever they play, the Texters need to win just once to advance to the semis.

A win by Barangay Ginebra over Talk n Text hands B-Meg the top seeding. Otherwise, the Llamados stay at second.
Ginebra, meanwhile, finishes either third, fourth or fifth.

But whatever happens, Petron, Ginebra, Rain or Shine and Meralco are the teams figuring in the two best-of-three quarters matchups.

Most possibly, it’s Ginebra versus Rain or Shine except in case the Kings win over the Texters and the Elasto Painters lose to the Aces.

In such scenario, Ginebra faces Meralco while Petron tangles with Rain or Shine in the quarters. (SB)

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Possibility for Rudy Hatfield to Play this PBA Season

Rudy Hatfield won’t be available to play for Barangay Ginebra until next month. If the Kings make it to the semifinals of the Philippine Cup, the H-Bomb might still be able to catch up and play this conference. And if Ginebra advances to the finals, Hatfield could find himself in coach Siot Tanquingcen’s rotation.

But is the Ginebra coaching staff willing to gamble and fix what ain’t broke by bringing in Hatfield with the Philippine Cup playoffs just around the corner? Chemistry is something that doesn’t come easy. It takes time to develop familiarity and trust among players. Tanquingcen recently engineered a trade that brought in Allein Maliksi from Barako Bull and Rico Maierhofer from B-Meg. Maliksi still hasn’t played a game for the Kings while Maierhofer played briefly in one. They’ll be broken in slowly so as not to upset the rhythm of Ginebra’s usual rotation. What’s going for Hatfield is he isn’t a stranger to the Ginebra system, having worked before with Tanquingcen and assistant coach Jong Uichico.

Lineup changes may be made only until Dec. 12, the day after the end of the eliminations. So if Tanquingcen has plans of enlisting Hatfield for the playoffs, he’s got to line him up by Dec. 12 even if the H-Bomb won’t be ready to play until early next year. It’s possible that Ginebra will have been eliminated by the time Hatfield is available but it’s also possible that the Kings may still be in contention.

At the moment, Ginebra is 7-5 with two games left in its schedule – Barako Bull on Thursday and Talk ‘N’ Text on Sunday. If the Kings win both assignments, they’ll move up to 9-5. The goal is to finish the eliminations in the top six because winding up No. 7 or No. 8 will mean playing either of the top two placers with a twice-to-win disadvantage.

Either Talk ‘N’ Text or Petron will notch win No. 10 after their encounter at the Smart Araneta Coliseum tonight. The winner will automatically gain at least a playoff for a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals, the first stage of the playoffs. If B-Meg beats Shopinas on Thursday as it is expected to, then the Derby Ace Llamados also earn at least a playoff for the other twice-to-beat advantage with win No. 10. A three-way tie for first will result if Petron beats Talk ‘N’ Text, B-Meg beats Shopinas and Talk ‘N’ Text beats Ginebra on Sunday.

* * *

Under tournament rules, there will be no playoff to break ties unless it is for the second and eighth slots. With Alaska and Shopinas out of the running, the only possible playoff will be for second place if Petron, B-Meg and Talk ‘N’ Text finish with identical 10-4 records

Rain Or Shine will end up at 9-5 with a win over Alaska in the first game of today’s twinbill. That will assure the Elasto Painters of a top six rung

Barako Bull now totes a 6-6 record with two games to go – against Ginebra on Thursday and Powerade on Sunday. The Energy Boosters could go up to 8-6 to tie Meralco in the standings. It’s possible that Barako, Meralco and Ginebra will finish with identical 8-6 marks. Rain Or Shine will also finish at 8-6 if it loses to Alaska today. In this case, the logjam will be broken via the quotient system. That means the Ginebra-Barako and Barako-Powerade games will be bloody battles where the goal is to win by as many points as possible

Ginebra PBA Governor Robert Non said yesterday he’s leaving it up to the Kings coaching staff to decide if Hatfield will be in the lineup for the Dec. 12 cut-off. Uichico confirmed that Hatfield won’t be ready until January and his contract remains under negotiation. Uichico said he expects the contract to be finalized this week.

* * * *

Last Sunday, Ginebra played without Maliksi, Maierhofer and Jay-Jay Helterbrand but managed to upend Meralco, 81-71. In the Kings’ six wins before the game, they held their opponents to an average of 79.8 points. Ginebra was also No. 2 in field goal percentage allowed at an even 40 percent. The indicators showed that for Ginebra to beat Meralco, the Kings had to limit the Bolts to 80 or less and less than 40 percent shooting. No question, defense was the key to victory and so it was. Meralco scored only 15 in the first period and 12 in the second then sputtered with just seven in the last 8:21. The Bolts hit only 32.5 percent from the field and delivered 71 points. Mike Cortez led the way with 14 points, nine rebounds, five assists, three steals and no turnover in 36 minutes. Rico Villanueva chipped in 11 points and nine rebounds in 33 minutes.

Ginebra has now won three in a row, four of its last five, but the Kings will be hard pressed to extend the streak unless Tanquingcen harnesses Maliksi, Maierhofer and Helterbrand for the tough games ahead. Somehow, Tanquingcen has been able to collect wins with hard-nosed team defense, a style that Ginebra isn’t traditionally known for. The Kings built a reputation as a run-and-gun machine through the years but times have changed. Now, the accent is on defense and if that’s what it takes to win, neither Tanquingcen nor the Barangay multitude will have it any other way.


Barangay Ginebra held Meralco, Leading 800th win in Franchise History

Barangay Ginebra held Meralco down to 27 points in the first half and to seven points in the last 8:21 of play in a fine defensive job leading to its 800th win in franchise history.

The Kings drubbed the Bolts, 81-71, as they sustained their climb in the PBA Philippine Cup, notching a third straight win to the delight of their throngs that braved this rainy Sunday. 

“We had a good weekend but the mission is not yet over. We still have to keep on fighting and keep on climbing,” said coach Siot Tanquingcen as they jacked up their stock at sixth place with a 7-5 win-loss card.

“Yes, things are falling into place but we’re still not there. The goal is not just to make the quarterfinals. Kailangan maiwasan namin lumaban against a team with a twice-to-beat advantage. Mabigat yon,” Tanquingcen also said.

Barako, at 6-6, is a team that can still dislodge Ginebra in the Top Six.
Meralco wound up at 8-6, out of the race for the Top Two that reward twice-to-beat incentive in the quarterfinals.

Sol Mercado and Mark Cadona, Meralco’s two-man scoring machine, combined for 38 points but the rest of Meralco team was limited to 33. “The guys did work hard defensively in this game,” said Tanquingcen of their defensive effort, limiting the Bolts to their worst output in a game in the conference.

Mike Cortez, Ronald Tubid, Mark Caguioa and Rico Villanueva led the job on the other end, each one finishing in double figures.

Cortez, Villanueva, Caguioa, Tubid and Willy Wilson teamed up in their most decisive attack, a 13-2 run that gave the Kings a 79-66 lead with 1:46 left to play. The Bolts were still very much in the thick of things at 64-66 before disintegrating. Despite being held down to 27 in the first half, the Bolts stuck together, keeping the Kings from pulling away with a stand led by Mercado and Cardona.

Mercado led all scorers with 22 points that went with nine assists and six steals. Cardona added 16 points and seven rebounds. (SB)

The scores:

GINEBRA 81- Cortez 14, Tubid 13, Caguioa 13, Villanueva 11, Canaleta 9, Wilson W. 6, Mamaril 6, Intal 5, Lbagala 4, Wilson J. 0, Menk 0.

MERALCO 71 - Mercado 22, Cardona 16, Espinas 7, Macapagal 7, Isip 6, Yee 5, Hugnatan 4, Lanete 2, Omolon 2, Ballesteros 0, Borboran 0, Taulava 0.
Quarters: 22-15, 36-27, 59-50, 81-71


IF Rain or Shine's effort was as big as its heart, would have been easily shrugged off Sunday.

But the Elasto Painters were seemingly just going through the motions for the most part, giving head coach Yeng Guiao few reasons to be pleased following his team's 88-81 victory in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Jeffrei Chan scored a team-high 14 points, but it was the help from the likes of Ryan Arana and Ronnie Matias in the decisive fourth period which enabled Rain or Shine to quash the challenge of Shopinas and snap out of an alarming skid.

"It's just nice to break out of the losing streak," said Guiao after the rugged, often bruising game. "I think the guys just put out an effort enough to break out of that losing streak, although I'm not happy with the effort. We could have played a lot better."

The win was the eighth in 13 games for Rain or Shine and snapped its losing streak at four games. Shopinas was wishing for the same thing yet ultimately dropped its 13th straight game, matching the 29-year-old league's worst start. Great Taste also had a 0-13 start in the 1982 Reinforced Filipino Conference.

The Clickers could take sole hold of the dubious distinction if they drop their last elimination game against B-Meg on Thursday.

Jojo Duncil scattered a career-high 23 points to pace Shopinas, which had a splendid start but failed to take advantage of Rain or Shine’s losing prized rookie Paul Lee early in the game due to injury and center JR Quinahan to a major infraction in the third quarter. Lee, usually good for 14.9 points, 4.6 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 1.0 steal per game, saw action for only two minutes in the first quarter. He left the game after getting kneed in the left shin by a driving Ogie Menor.

He was taken to a nearby hospital where tests conducted on his leg proved negative.

Another bright note Guiao could take solace from is the fact his players seldom wavered during their slide, which saw them lose by two points to B-Meg, Talk ‘N Text and Barako Bull.

"Those games were close," he pointed out. "I thought we should have won at least two of those. But it's not really like our world turned upside down. We were still playing good and the others were simply playing better.

"Baka merong cycle. It happens to all the teams. We hope with this (win) paakyat ulit cycle namin. Pero hindi kami nasiraan ng loob. We were losing on breaks, okay pa rin iyon."

Guiao now wants his team's game to pick up when they wind up the eliminations against Alaska on Sunday.

There would be no lightning striking Rain or Shine down Sunday and Matias and Arana made sure of that.

The two were at the forefront of the massive assault from a 62-58 count, with Arana repeatedly shredding Ren-Ren Ritualo's defense and Matias working double-time underneath in making it an unassailable 83-72 difference, only 2:30 left.

Quinahan also left the game due to an elbow on Menor's face, equivalent to a flagrant foul-penalty 2, with still 3:45 left in the third period. That gave Shopinas the opening to trim a 50-59 deficit to just six entering the final canto.

The Elasto Painters set themselves up for the win by limiting the Clickers to just five points in the second period to take a 41-32 lead at the half.

Those points, products of a 2-for-16 field shooting, tied Shopinas for ninth among all-time lows in league history and put to waste a fine start in which it raced to a 9-0 spread before stretching the lead by as much as 22-9.

The incidents involving Menor actually started in the first half in which Arana was assessed a flagrant foul-penalty 1 for elbowing Menor in the nape and Shopinas' Homer Se got thrown out due to two technical fouls in just three minutes of action. While the E-Painters seemingly drew inspiration from such infractions, the Clickers unraveled. (NC)

The scores:

RAIN OR SHINE 88 - Chan 14, Arana 12, Quinahan 12, Matias 9, Norwood 9, Cruz 7, Tang 7, Belga 7, Rodriguez 7, Buenafe 4, Lee 0, Ibanes 0.

SHOPINAS.COM 81 - Duncil 23, Jazul 17, Sena 11, Hubalde 9, Espiritu 7, Ritualo 6, Menor 4, Sison 2, Daa 2, Escobal 0, Aquino 0, Se 0.

Quarterscores: 19-27, 41-32, 61-55, 88-81

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Which Team is Better? Petron Blaze or Barangay Ginebra

Petron Blaze takes a shot at outright playoff crack at a twice-to-beat incentive while Barangay Ginebra seeks to formalize entry into the quarterfinals in a crucial tiff Friday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

It could well be a battle with both teams determined to press their bids especially now that the elimination phase is already in the closing stage.

They play at 7:30 p.m. with the Boosters out to firm up their hold of first place and the Kings out to put a lock on a spot in the Final Eight.

“The goal is to clinch twice-to-beat whether at first place or at second,” said Petron coach Ato Agustin.
Agustin and his chargers assure themselves of at least a tie for second place if they’re able to stretch their searing streak to seven games.

A sweep of their last two games guarantees the Boosters of the coveted twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals. Petron dislodged Talk n Text atop the heap Tuesday when the Boosters topped the Alaska Milk Aces, 90-85, while the Texters bowed to the B-Meg Llamados, 104-114.

Trying to stop the Boosters’ run is the Ginebra side aching to start get going and salvage a good seeding in the playoffs.

“It’s important we start playing consistently and make a good run on our last four games,” said Ginebra coach Siot Tanquingcen.

The Kings’ goal is not just to make the quarterfinals but land at least the top six to avoid the top team or the second ranked team in the quarterfinals.

The top two after the elims will enjoy twice-to-beat edge versus the No. 8 and the No. 7 squads in the quarters. (SB)

Meralco bolts battles Powerade Tigers

MERALCO has some lofty targets in mind and coach Ryan Gregorio minces no words in baring them.

“We are battling for a good position heading to the playoffs,” said Gregorio. “With two games left in our schedule, we are determined to have a good placing in the middle of the pack (Nos. 3 to 6) and if it is enough to push us up to No. 1 or 2, perfect.”

First, the Bolts have to hurdle Powerade, which has its own coveted goal of officially claiming at least the eighth and last slot in the quarterfinals as early as Friday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Tigers look poised to make a surge of their own after winning back-to-back games, the last a 131-96 drubbing of Talk N Text last Sunday.

Starting with a similarly lopsided 102-84 victory over, coach Bo Perasol now believes his team has the confidence and will to exact revenge over Meralco while not waiting for a game against Barako Bull on Tuesday to close the door on the quarterfinals aspirations of Alaska. “Although we are happy with the way we played in our last two games, we know that our game against Meralco is another playing field,” said Perasol.

“We understand the challenge,” he added. “However, we likewise comprehend now our strength as a team.”

Meralco can have a shot at a top two spot with wins against Powerade and Ginebra on Sunday, but Gregorio would rather have his players focusing on the game at hand and based his strategy accordingly. “We are very cautious with our game plan. One thing is certain,” said Gregorio. “We cannot play them with just offense in our mind. We want to dictate the tempo by counting stops and limiting their fast break attack.”

Meralco beat Powerade the first time they met, 98-96, when the Bolts shut out the Tigers in the last three minutes while leaning on some clutch scoring by Mark Cardona and Gabby Espinas in the stretch, last Nov. 16.

Gregorio admitted Powerade has a deeply-stocked arsenal but pinpointed the Tigers main men as the focus of the Bolts’ defense.
“Gary David is again leading the league in scoring. He must be guarded and made to bleed for his points. (Marcio) Lassiter is also playing consistent ball. He is also a marked man. Jayvee Casio is coming along very well,” enumerated Gregorio.

“Almost everyone in their lineup is capable of scoring, so our defense must really be in sync, solid and no let-up.” (NC)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Petron Defeats Alaska Aces

It was a perfect November for Petron Blaze.

The Boosters came through with clutch plays down the stretch and defeated stubborn Alaska, 90-85, for their sixth straight win in the 2011 PBA Philippine Cup Tuesday night at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Petron ended this month unscathed after six games and improved their mark to 9-3, boosting its chances for the twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinal round.

Arwind Santos had 24 points, 9 rebounds and 3 steals, Alex Cabagnot added 20 markers, six boards and five assists while Dennis Miranda contributed 14 off the bench as they hit the crucial shots in the closing minutes.
The Aces fell to 3-9 and are now in danger of missing the playoffs just for the third time in the last 32 conferences.
“First quarter we did a god job shutting down their transition game but in the second quarter, we relaxed at nawala ‘yung patience sa offense,” said Boosters head coach Ato Agustin.
“I told them we can’t underestimate Alaska and it was not an easy game for us,” he added.
Petron really had to dig deep this time as the Aces, after trailing early at 3-18, came back fighting in the second canto and trimmed the gap to 38-39 going to the break.
It was a tight contest since then with the Aces even taking a 46-43 lead in the third and a 70-68 edge on Sonny Thoss’s three-point play off Rob Reyes.
But Petron answered back with a 15-6 exchange, led by Santos, Cabagnot and Miranda to erect an 83-76 cushion with 3:34 remaining.
Alaska was not about to give up easily as the Aces scored the next nine points to take an 85-85 lead with 1:39 left in the contest.
Miranda tied the game with an undergoal stab, 85-85, and after LA Tenorio missed a triple in the ensuing play, Santos put the lead back to the Boosters with a side jumper, 87-85, 58, ticks left.
Alaska committed a pair of turnovers in its next two possessions, one on Tenorio and the other one on Mac Baracael that led to Danny Ildefonso’s split and Santos’s tip-in to take the game for good.
“Goal talaga namin mag-No. 1 para sa twice-to-beat advantage,” said Agustin. “Whatever happens sa next game, we still have a chance.”
Thoss had 19 points and 19 rebounds for the Aces while Baracael and Tenorio each had 13 markers.
The scores:
PETRON 90 – Santos 24, Cabagnot 20, Miranda 14, Reyes 8, Yeo 8, Ildefonso 7, Baclao 4, Tugade 3, Guevarra 2, Doruelo 0, Agustin 0, Sharma 0.
ALASKA 85 – Thoss 19, Baracael 13, Tenorio 13, Custodio 10, Reyes 10, Baguio 10, Bugia 6, Salamat 4, Eman 0.
Quarters: 21-9, 39-38, 64-60, 90-85

Friday, November 25, 2011

5th Straight win For Bmeg, Pj Simons 3 Pointer Pushes the Llamados Past Rain or shine

Peter June Simon nailed the game-winning three-pointer with less than a minute left as B-MEG rallied past hard-luck Rain or Shine, 102-100, in a thrilling PBA Philippine Cup game Friday at the Araneta Coliseum.

Simon's clutch three-pointer capped Llamados’ closing 7-2 run after they trailed by three, 98-95, in the final three minutes of the contest after losing grip of a 21-point first quarter lead.

The Elasto Painters had a chance of reversing the outcome of the match after Mark Barroca failed to seal it for B-MEG when he missed on the Llamados’ final possession with 5.8 seconds left.

But rookie Paul Lee bungled a potential three-pointer just before the final buzzer, handing his team a third consecutive loss. B-MEG secured its fifth straight win.

"That was clutch basket by PJ (Simon). We're just lucky to pull this one off. Rain or Shine came ready to play," said an obviously relieved B-MEG coach Tim Cone after the match.

B-MEG and Rain or Shine are now tied at 7-4 as the Llamados remained very much in the running for the No. 2 spot and the twice-to-beat incentive in the playoffs that goes with it.

James Yap paced the Llamados with 32 points, including 19 in the first half where B-MEG zoomed to a 24-3lead with five minutes left in the opening period.

But Rain or Shine came back strong and were facing a 51-49 deficit at the turn which TY Tang closed with a three-pointer.

The Elasto Painters eventually caught up with the Llamados at 90-all behind Lee's two free throws.

Rain or Shine then scored eight of the game's next 13 points to take a three-point lead entering the homestretch.

Mark Pingris and Kerby Raymundo's consecutive baskets gave B-MEG a 99-98 lead, before Beau Belga's long two put Rain or Shine on top for the last time at 100-99.

Lee finished with 21 points to lead Rain or Shine, which is coming off a heartbreaking 106-104 overtime loss to league-leader and defending champion Talk 'N Text last week. — JVP, GMA News


B-MEG 102—J. Yap 32, Simon 16, Barroca 14, Urbiztondo 11, Raymundo 11, Pingris 10, De Vance 3, Reavis 3, R. Yap 2, De Ocampo 0.

Rain or Shine 100—Lee 21, Buenafe 12, Matias 10, Rodriguez 9, Arana 9, Tang 8, Norwood 7, Belga 7, Chan 6, Quinahan 6, Cruz 4, Ibanes 1.

Quarter scores: 30-13, 51-49, 79-77, 102-100.


Powerade Defeats Shopinas Clickers in the PBA

Powerade snapped a four-game losing streak with a much-needed 102-84 victory over Friday in the 2011-12 PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

Rookie Marcio Lassiter led the Tigers’ breakaway in the third period to help give Powerade a 4-7 win-loss mark, a full game advantage over Alaska (3-8).

Lassiter tallied an all-around performance with 21 points, six rebounds and eight assists, despite not finishing the game due to a bad cut on his right eye courtesy of the wayward elbow of the Clickers’ Ogie Menor.

Doug Kramer added 17 points while Gary David contributed 16 for the Tigers.
“We really have to thank God for helping us go through these struggles,” said Powerade head coach Bo Perasol. “It was difficult for us. We could have won two of those four games.”

“We still have a chance. We are still in the thick of things but we’ll be going through the eye of the needle.”
Shopinas has now registered the second-longest losing streak in league history with 12 straight setbacks, one short of tying two teams, Great Taste and Countryfair, for the infamous record.

Like most of their matches this tournament, the Clickers were in the game in the first half and even led, 34-31, on Elmer Espiritu’s jumper.

But the Tigers ended the half with a 19-9 exchange to carry a 50-43 lead at halftime.
Lassiter and Kramer then combined forces in the next 12 minutes to help Powerade erect an 84-64 lead.
The Clickers trimmed the gap to 91-77 on Pong Escobal’s jumper. But David drilled a three-pointer to start a 9-0 salvo that gave Powerade a 98-77 spread with 3:36 remaining in the game.

The Tigers can clinch a spot in the quarterfinal round if they sweep their last three games against Talk ‘N Text, Meralco, and Barako Bull.
“I just hope we get the confidence we need with this win,” said Perasol.
James Sena led Shopinas with 19 points and 11 rebounds while Espiritu, Escobal and Paolo Hubalde each had 12 points for the team of coach Franz Pumaren.
The scores:

POWERADE 102 – Lassiter 21, Kramer 17, David 16, Cruz 9, Antonio 9, Adducul 8, Casio 6, Crisano 6, Anthony 5, Vanlandingham 3, Lingganay 2, Martinez 0, Allera 0.
SHOPINAS.COM 84 – Sena 19, Espiritu 12, Escobal 12, Hubalde 12, Sison 7, Menor 5, Duncil 4, Daa 4, Ritualo 4, Jazul 2, Se 2, Canta 1, Bagatsing 0, Aquino 0.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sinag players, PBA stars likely to comprise new SMART-Gilas pool

InterAKTV file photo/Justin Gener
JAKARTA — Members of the gold-medal seeking Sinag Pilipinas squad competing in the 26th Southeast Asian Games are strong candidates to become part of the next wave of the SMART-Gilas national program alongside select PBA players.
Sinag team manager and SMART-Gilas operations head Butch Antonio told InterAKTV in an exclusive interview that Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas officials have begun discussions about the composition of the next national team.
“Ideally, we initially agreed on 15 players from the amateur ranks and 15 players from the PBA,” Antonio said. “Most of the candidates naman ng SMART-Gilas 2 will come from the Sinag team. Their performance in the SEA Games will be evaluated as well.”
The pool will also include players from the PBA. Last month, the league’s commissioner Chito Salud asked the SBP to draw a list of players it wished to be part of the pool, and had earlier committed up to 16 PBA players.
Salud and PBA chairman Mamerto Mondragon, however, clarified that PBA players will only see action in the FIBA Asia Championship, the qualifying event for the Olympics and the world championships.
Among players who are performing well for the Sinag Pilipinas squad are UAAP standouts Kiefer Ravena, Ray Parks, RR Garcia and Greg Slaughter, Fil-American D-League players Cliff Hodge and Chris Ellis, NCAA star Garvo Lanete, and SMART-Gilas team captain Chris Tiu.
The SBP has yet to give its wish list of PBA players as executive director Sonny Barrios left for Geneva, Switzerland to attend a special FIBA function.
But having cited the need for continuity in the program, the SBP is likely to request for the services of some of the members of the first batch of SMART-Gilas players who are now playing in the PBA, who include Chris Lutz, J-Vee Casio, Marcio Lassiter, Mac Baracael, Dylan Ababou, Mark Barroca, Jason Ballesteros, and Japeth Aguilar.  The SBP is also expected to name some of the league’s resident stars to join the pool.

source :

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Meralco vs Rain or Shine in the PBA

Meralco, with its active roster finally coming in full force, seeks payback against Rain or Shine Sunday when they open up Sunday's double-header in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

The Bolts and the Elasto Painters are both gunning for the top spot in the season-opening conference as the winner in their 4:15 p.m. match-up will get the chance of taking sole leadership.

Meralco has already reactivated Mark Cardona and Sol Mercado from the injured list. The Bolts are also set to welcome big man Reynel Hugnatan in time for their rematch with the league leader.

The Bolts, minus their three stalwarts, dropped an 89-84 decision to the Elasto Painters in their first meeting more than a week ago.

Meralco coach Ryan Gregorio expects to give Rain or Shine a good fight with his top gunners back in harness. "The last time we played them we had an incomplete roster."

"Sol, Mac, and Reynel are back, and I believe we have a much better chance of matching up against them and hopefully win in the end," said Gregorio, whose Bolts hold a 4-2 win-loss slate and are currently on a two-game winning run.

The Painters, on the other hand, share the lead with defending champion Talk 'N Text and Barako Bull at 4-1. RoS is also fresh from a 120-84 rout of the Alaska Aces.

"RoS is playing excellent basketball," admitted Gregorio. "They are so fluid that all the players are in good sync. Everyone is capable of scoring so our team defense must be as solid as possible."

Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao, however, said Meralco is now a different team with Mercado, Cardona, and Hugnatan back for the Bolts.

"It's going to be a totally different ball game from the first time we played them," said the gung-ho mentor. "With Sol and Mac-Mac healthy, the complexion of the game changes. We have to step up defensively to have a chance at winning. Teams are starting to give us the second looks and are preparing a lot harder when playing us."

All eyes will also be focused on the likely match-up between Rain or Shine rookie Paul Lee and Mercado, who tweeted a few weeks ago about the hype being given on the sensational freshman out of University of the East.

In the 6:30 p.m. main game, Petron and Powerade clash hoping to end their respective two-game skids.

The Blaze Boosters have dropped their last two games after winning their first three games. Only last Friday, Petron suffered a 96-86 setback at the hands of the Tropang Texters in a rematch of their Governors Cup title showdown.

That second loss dropped the Blaze Booster to a tie with sister-team Ginebra at 3-2.

The Tigers also lost their last two assignments, including a heartbreaking 73-72 setback against the Kings in Victorias City, Negros Occidental. — JVP, GMA News

Saturday, October 29, 2011

B-meg Derby Ace Llamados Bows to Barako Bulls in Davao via Overtime

Barako Bulls survived the B-MEG Llamados in a thriliing 87-84 overtime encounter in Panabo City, Davao del Norte for its fourth straight win in the 2011-12 PBA Philippine Cup.

Willie Miller led the way with 18 points and four rebounds for Barako, which clawed back from a 17-0 deficit to open the game. Danny Seigle, making his return to the lineup, teamed up with rookie Dylan Ababou to right the ship in the first half, allowing the Energy to cut the B-MEG lead to 39-37 at the end of the second quarter.

Barako looked poised to win the match outright in regulation after two free throws by Ababou gave the team a 79-76 lead with 7.5 seconds left in the game. But James Yap hit a fadeaway three-pointer from 27 feet over the outstretched arms of Danny Seigle to tie the score, 79-all, with 1.8 seconds left. Miller’s desperation shot in the ensuing play hit iron, sending the game into overtime.

The two teams continued to battle in the extra period, before a Wynne Arboleda jumper over Josh Urbiztondo broke the last deadlock at 84-all with less than a minute left in the game.

B-MEG came up empty in the next two possessions and were forced to send Jondan Salvador to the free throw line with 8.8 seconds left. Salvador, who was originally drafted by the Purefoods franchise in 2005, missed both free throws, giving the Llamados another opportunity.

But Kerby Raymundo threw away a pass intended for James Yap in the next possession, and B-MEG once again fouled Salvador to stop the clock. The burly Barako big man split his free throws to give his team a three-point lead with a second left. In its last play, B-MEG again went to Yap, who was well-covered by Barako. The Llamados’ top gun ended up missing a corner three-pointer at the buzzer.

With the victory, Barako improved its win-loss record to 4-1, joining Rain or Shine and Talk ‘N Text atop the Philippine Cup standings. B-MEG’s record fell to 2-4 under coach Tim Cone.

Friday, October 28, 2011


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Barako Bull Eyes 4th Straight Win

MANILA, Philippines — Though some of his players are now members of the so-called “Vintage Club,” coach Junel Baculi knows Barako Bull still has what it takes to contend for playoff berths.

The red-hot Energy try extend their winning streak to four as they play the unpredictable B-Meg Llamados in the PBA Philippine Cup today at the Panabo Multi-Purpose Cultural, Tourism and Sports Center in Davao del Norte.

The lone encounter between the Energy and Llamados presented by Phoenix Fuel is set at 6:45 p.m.

Baculi took over a team that acquired in the off-season former two-time Most Valuable Player (MVP) Willie Miller, as well as fellow veterans Mic Pennisi, Sunday Salvacion, Don Allado and Jondan Salvador in separate deals.

Barako Bull also took in rookies Dylan Ababou and Allein Maliksi to join another set of “seniors” like Paul Artadi, Wynne Arboleda, Leo Najorda, Dorian Pena and Danny Seigle.

The 6-foot-7 Seigle was sidelined the last three games due to calf muscle injury, but the Energy won all their matches by beating Barangay Ginebra (88-75), defending champion Talk ’N Text (100-86) and newcomer (96-78).

“The veteran players are proving that they still have several years left, that they can still contend and win,” Baculi said, referring to the likes of Miller, Pennisi, Pena and Salvacion, who were all acquired after helping their previous teams to either a championship or a Finals stint.

Both Pennisi and Salvacion played key roles in Petron’s title run in the Governors’ Cup against TNT, but they were traded to Barako Bull during the PBA Rookie Draft.

“They are still adjusting to the system, but we’re getting there. The good thing is that we’re winning while players are trying to adjust,” said Baculi, who will have Seigle back in the roster but will miss both Najorda and Maliksi due to knee injuries.

Barako Bull will face a B-Meg side that snapped a two-game skid last week with a 97-80 win over Powerade where PJ Simon collected 21 points while James Yap contributed 20 points, including 12 in the first period.


Talk n Text Revenge Against Petron

Talk ‘N Text got the “closure” it needed with Petron Blaze as it came away with a 96-86 win and tied Rain or Shine for the top spot of the 2011-12 PBA Philippine Cup Friday at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

The trio combined for 61 points and were responsible for giving Talk ‘N Text enough cushion to deal the Boosters their second straight loss after a 3-0 start.Meeting for the first time since losing in the epic seven-game series of the last season’s Governors’ Cup finals, the Tropang Texters played solid the whole game with Jared Dillinger, Ryan Reyes and Japeth Aguilar leading the way for the defending champions.

“I guess this is the closure we needed. Hopefully, it will propel us to move forward, move on and make another run this season,” said Tropnag Texters coach Chot Reyes.

“We got big production from JD, Ryan and Japeth but the second unit also gave us a lift,” he added.
Talk ‘N Text played minus Jimmy Alapag, Harvey Carey, Aaron Aban, and Ranidel de Ocampo due to injuries, but they were hardly missed as the Tropang Texters had another terrific start behind Aguilar’s 10 points and 9 rebounds in the opening period.

They led by as much as 17 points, the last at 60-43, and were still holding a 75-62 cushion going to the final quarter.

Joseph Yeo sparked an 11-5 exchange for the Boosters to cut the lead to 80-73. But that was the closest that Petron could get as Dillinger, Peek and Larry Fonacier joined forces for their own 11-6 salvo and put the game out of reach, 91-79, with 2:32 remaining in the game.

Alapag’s right foot is in a soft cast while Carey will be out for at least two more weeks. De Ocampo is still recuperating after an operation on his fractured nose.

“The other guys are stepping and that’s the story of this team. When someone goes down, other guys picked up the slack,” said Reyes.

Rookie Chris Lutz and Arwind Santos each had 20 points for Petron while Alex Cabagnot and Danny Ildefonso contributed 16 and 10 markers respectively.

Denok Miranda missed the game for the Boosters because of stomach flu.
The scores:

TALK N’ TEXT 96 – Dillinger 21, Reyes 21, Aguilar 20, Peek 12, Williams 8, Castro 7, Fonacier 7, Raymundo 0, Oreta 0, Lao 0.
PETRON 86 – Lutz 20, Santos 20, Cabagnot 16, Ildefonso 10, Yeo 8, Baclao 6, Sharma 4, Guevarra 2, Agustin 0, Reyes 0.
Quarterscores: 29-20, 48-36, 75-62, 96-86

PBA Allstar Weekend Update : Veterans vs Rookie, Sophomore and Juniors

With a bumper crop of rookies led by former mainstays of the SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national team, the PBA has decided to reinstitute a classic formula for the all-star game: Veterans versus Rookies-Sophomores-Juniors.

The news was confirmed by PBA commissioner Chito Salud.

“We will be starting an online poll which will last until December to get fans’ choices of players,” he said. “RSJ versus Veterans will push through and will replace the common North versus South format.”

Top overall pick JVee Casio, Chris Lutz, Marcio Lassiter, Mac Baracael, Mark Barroca, Dylan Ababou, and Jason Ballesteros were all selected in the first round of this year’s draft after a tour of duty with SMART-Gilas. Other newcomers who have caught the fancy of basketball fans in the Philippine Cup are Paul Lee of Rain or Shine and Allein Maliksi of Barako Bull.

Notable sophomores include last season’s Rookie of the Year Rabeh Al-Hussaini and his Petron teammates Nonoy Baclao and Rey Guevarra, Barangay Ginebra’s John Wilson, Jimbo Aquino, and Rob Labagala, and stalwarts Elmer Espiritu and RJ Jazul. Possible choices among third-year players include Japeth Aguilar of Talk ‘N Text, Rico Maierhofer of B-MEG, Chris Ross of Meralco, and Jervy Cruz and Ronnie Matias of Rain or Shine.

Aware of the possibility that deserving players may be bumped off the veterans team, Salud also announced an interesting new wrinkle to the weekend’s festivities. The usual Rookies-Sophomores game will be replaced by a legends challenge, which will feature current PBA stars alongside former greats. PBA legends such as Alvin Patrimonio, Jojo Lastimosa, Allan Caidic, and Ronnie Magsanoc have already expressed their willingness to play in the game.

The Veterans versus Rookies-Sophomores format was first used in a PBA all-star game in 1989, after a two-year period that saw young stars like Patrimonio, Lastimosa, Jerry Codinera, Benjie Paras, Bong Alvarez, and many others enter the league. In 1990, the Veterans faced off against a team composed of rookies, sophomores and juniors, before the format was shelved in 1991.

The PBA resurrected the Veterans versus Rookies-Sophomores format in 1999, when a rookie crop of talented Filipino-Americans led by Danny Seigle, Asi Taulava, and Eric Menk, on a team that also featured second-year player Danny Ildefonso.

Meralco bolts Gives Alaska 5th Setback in the PBA

Meralco again banked on its defense down the stretch to complete a come-from-behind 81-75 win over Alaska Friday night for its first back-to-back wins in the 2011-12 PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

Nelbert Omolon had two crucial defensive boards and forced Cyrus Baguio to a critical turnover in the final minute to help the Bolts preserved their fourth win in six games while keeping the Aces without a win after five starts.

Chico Lanete led Meralco in scoring with 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field, while Mark Isip and the comebacking Mark Cardona each had 10 apiece for the Bolts.

“We wanted to make sure that we build on our character. The challenge for us is to win against a team which is struggling,” said Meralco coach Ryan Gregorio.

“We took care of the rebounding and that goes to show the kind of game and intensity we displayed in this game.”

Omolon, Sol Mercado and Gabby Espinas each had eight markers for the Bolts, who trailed 56-52 going into the final quarter.

But Lanete keyed Meralco’s strong start in the fourth period and conspired with Cardona to put their team in front at 72-68 with 4:56 remaining.

Baguio hit a triple to push the Aces within one, but Cardona hit a 10-foot teardrop shot to give Meralco some breathing room, 76-73.

Baguio followed up Sonny Thoss’s missed drive, before Mercado split his free throws in the next play to give the Bolts a slim 77-75 lead with 58.2 seconds remaining.

Omolon then collared a key rebound off Tony dela Cruz’s missed side jumper. After Lanete came up empty in the ensuing play, Baguio threw away a crucial possession as he lost grip of the ball while trying to attack the defense of Omolon.

That led to Espinas’s two free throws, 79-75, and Taulava sealed the win with a putback on Omolon’s two missed free throws.

Thoss led all scorers with 19 points while Baguio added 18. Jay-R Reyes netted 11 points for Alaska, which fell to 0-5.

The scores:

MERALCO 81 – Lanete 17, Isip 10, Cardona 10, Mercado 8, Espinas 8, Omolon 8, Macapagal 7, Borboran 4, Taulava 4, Ballesteros 3, Yee 2, Faundo 0.

ALASKA 75 – Thoss 19, Baguio 18, Reyes 11, Dela Cruz 8, Tenorio 7, Baracael 4, Custodio 4, Mepana 2, Cablay 2, Eman 0.

Quarterscores: 20-19, 36-36, 52-56, 81-75

source :

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Alaska versus Meralco Bolts in the PBA

HIS Meralco team has just recently wielded the upset axe so coach Ryan Gregorio should know how to avoid it. That is why Gregorio keeps stressing the need for his Bolts to be on their toes when they tackle the winless Alaska Aces Friday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

 “Alaska is a dangerous team to battle at this point,” said Gregorio on the eve of the match his team needs to follow up its 80-70 stunner over previously unbeaten Petron Blaze. “Their 0-4 mark is not an indication of their roster power,” he added of Alaska. 

“They are one of the elite teams in the league and they are bound to break out of their slump. We will do our best to prevent it.” Mainly due to the intricacies of the triangle offense-based system being implemented by new head coach Joel Banal, plus the fact Alaska’s erstwhile injured main go-to guys, LA Tenorio and Cyrus Baguio, are slow to regain their old fiery form, the Aces have indeed struggled, most recently an 84-120 shellacking from Rain or Shine. 

 Still, Banal believes a breakthrough win is in the offing. "In our first three games our bigs played well and our guards struggled. In our loss to Rain or Shine our guards stepped up and played well but our bigs were nowhere to be found. Our goal tomorrow is to join forces. If both our bigs and guards contribute, then we have a game," he said. 

 Gregorio is not one to fall into any trap, however, emphasizing there is nothing more treacherous than a hurting foe. “You look at their roster and you will realize how packed they are on all fronts. Defense is the reason why we are winning games despite playing with a depleted roster and defense will still be given emphasis against a team trying to enter the win column,” he stated. 

 It is indeed its ability to make stops that has made Meralco a serious contender notwithstanding the absence of not only Sol Mercado but also Mark Cardona, Chris Ross and Chris Timberlake. Fully recovered from a pre-season knee injury, Mercado made a grand debut in the conference against Petron. The Bolts were also relentless in defense, not allowing the Boosters to shoot better than in the middle 30 percent from the field that limited the latter to 18.7 points below their conference average
The same kind of mind-set is what Gregorio wants from his team this time out.

“We are very ‘cautious’ with our approach against Alaska,” he stated. “No way are we going to the game thinking that it’s going to be a sure victory.

“We will definitely come out with a strong defensive mind-set similar to our approach when we battled the erstwhile unbeaten Petron.” (NC)

Petron Vs Talk n Text Rematch in PBA 37th Season

Petron Blaze, the improbable winner of the Governors Cup, and Talk n Text, the vanquished back-to-back champion, clash in their much-awaited rematch Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Forget that they’re fighting for a piece of the lead in the 2011-12 PBA Philippine Cup.
No matter what is at stake, the two teams are only expected to figure in a fierce duel after their highly charged Governors Cup title showdown.

“Game Eight,” said Petron ace Arwind Santos, seeing the 7:30 p.m. setto as extension of their title clash.
“Fresh pa sa isip ng lahat yun laban. Feeling mo talaga Finals pa rin bukas,” Santos added.
Petron slammed Talk n Text’s Triple Crown aspirations and completed its own ride to ultimate glory as the Boosters drubbed the Texters, 85-73, in the deciding Game Seven of their championship duel last Aug. 23.

Talk n Text coach Chot Reyes is trying to skirt the past, delving only on the present.

“It’s a tough game especially with Petron coming off a loss. Before their last game, I thought they and Barako Bull were playing the best basketball in the league,” Reyes said.

Of course, the Texters are the ones aching for a big redemption.

“Syempre, gusto nilang makabawi,” said Santos.
“I’m sure the intensity of the game will be as high as in the Finals,” added Santos, the prolific Petron forward on a hot streak of double-double outings.

“Dehado pa rin kami lalo na dahil nagpalakas sila. Lumaki at tumulin sila dahil dumating si Japeth Aguilar,” Santos further said.

The Boosters and the Texters are tied with the Barako Bull Energy with identical 3-1 win-loss records going to the match, slugging it out for a share of the lead with the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (4-1).

Petron suffered its first loss in the season only last Sunday when it bowed to Meralco, 70-80. Talk n Text succumbed to Barako, 86-100, on Oct. 19 but bounced back with a 96-94 decision over B-Meg in its next game. (SB)


Allein Maliksi of Barako Bull Will not Play Against Bmeg because of Injury

One of the scoring rookies of the rejuvenated Barako Bull Energy Boosters is injured. He is Allein Maliksi. According to him, he suffered a Lateral Collateral Ligament(LCL) injury with a sub meniscal tear in their game against the Clickers a few days ago. Well, that game was really very physical. So much so that two players, Dorian Pena and Homer Se were thrown out of the game.

Going on, Allein said that he may miss some games of the Barako Bull and that he will have to undergo a knee rehabilitation. The good thing is that he will not have to undergo a knee surgery.

The Barako Bull will face B-Meg on Saturday for an PBA out of town game.

Here's what Allein said in his Facebook Account:


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