In a draft filled with big names (June Mar Fajardo, Calvin Abueva, Chris Tiu, Cliff Hodge, and Chris Ellis among others), AJ Mandani and Jason Deutchman were just a couple of intriguing Fil-foreigners.
Deutchman, a 66 product of the San Diego State Aztec Warriors, was chosen by Global Port as the last pick of the first round, while Mandani, a 511 guard out of the Missouri S&T Joe Miners program, was chosen in the second round behind Yousef Taha, Dave Marcelo, and Jewel Ponferrada.
Before their game against the Meralco Bolts, Deutchman and Mandani averaged a combined 14.0ppg, 6.0rpg, 3.7apg, 1.0spg, and 1.0bpg in Global Ports first three games, which were all losses. Against the Bolts, Jason and AJ paired up for 32 points, 16 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals, and 2 blocks. Wow. Big diff right there.
With Gary David momentarily out, fellow rookie Vic Manuel a little inconsistent, and the enigmatic Rabeh Al-Hussaini remaining, well, enigmatic, the Batang Piers fortunes might rest on how well both Deutchman and Mandani can step up and produce.
As the tourney goes on, I have no doubt David and Willie Miller will still be the focal points of Global Ports play, but Im also sure Coach Glenn Capacio wouldnt mind seeing some of his young guns flash fine form.
Game Recaps: GLOBAL PORT BATANG PIER over MERALCO BOLTS, 105-104
Veteran Willie Miller had 33 points and 11 rebounds in GlobalPorts come-from-behind 105-104 victory over the Meralco Bolts Wednesday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
It was the first PBA victory for the franchise for the Batang Pier, who also relied on a strong finishing kick from rookies Jason Deutchman and AJ Mandani.
Akala ko hindi pa aabot ngayon, said GlobalPort rookie coach Glenn Capacio.
Siguro ako among the coaches ang ni-ni-nerbiyos dahil Im searching for my first win. Grabe mga teams sa PBA. Halos lahat malalakas. Mahirap yung first win, pero malaking bagay ito medyo down mag-iiba pakiramdam ng mga players.
Miller was a steady presence all game long, but it was rookies Deutchman and Mandani who delivered the most crucial baskets.
Deutchman scored 20 points, including three key three-pointers in the fourth quarter. His last three-pointer gave GlobalPort the lead for good, 100-99, with 1:13 left.
In the Batang Piers next offensive play, it was Mandani who rose to the challenge, completing a three-point play for a 103-99 tally.
After two missed attempts by Sunday Salvacion from beyond the arc, Ronjay Buenafe finally buried a three-pointer to put the Bolts within striking distance.
Rabeh Al-Hussaini, who scored 17 points, made two free throws for the Batang Pier, giving them a three-point lead with five seconds left.
Without a timeout left, Sol Mercado rushed to the other end, but surprisingly went coast-to-coast for a layup instead of a three-pointer to tie the game.
TALK N TEXT TROPANG TEXTERS over AIR21 EXPRESS, 96-89
Be it in the PBA or the UAAP, Norman Black wants to continue his winning reputation.
The multi-titled coach notched his first official win as coach of the Talk N Text Tropang Texters, leading his team to a 96-89 triumph over the Air 21 Express on Wednesday night at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Black coached the team in their 108-104 win over GlobalPort just one day after leading the Ateneo Blue Eagles to its fifth consecutive UAAP championship but was unable to inform the PBA in time to be officially named head coach.
This was his first official game as coach of the Tropang Texters.
The win enabled the Tropang Texters to pick up their third win in as many games and climb into the solo lead in the team standings.
We played much better in the second half. We gave up too much in the post on KG (Canaleta) and (Bitoy) Omolon in the first half. We switched bigger players on them, said Black.
Ranidel de Ocampo finished with 19 points while Jimmy Alapag, who achieved a milestone by becoming the latest player to make at least 1,000 three-point shots, added 16 points on 4-for-6 shooting from beyond the arc.
Black admitted he tried to get out of their structured offense to get their latest victory.
Our offense is still a work in progress. But Im satisfied with the way we played defense, particularly in the second half. We implemented a free flowing offense, he added.
The 2016 PBA Governors' Cup kicked off last week with big wins from NLEX, Ginebra, Meralco, and Mahindra. Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon): NLEX ROAD WARRIORS over BLACKWATER ELITE, 96-90 NLEX import Henry Walker made a big impression in his PBA return, scoring 44 points to lead his Road Warriors past the gutsy Blackwater Elite, 96-90, in the PBA Governors' Cup on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena. Walker shot 15-for-25 (60-percent) from the field and 6-for-13 (46-percent) fr... [read more]
The 2016 PBA Governors' Cup kicked off last week with big wins from NLEX, Ginebra, Meralco, and Mahindra.
Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon):
NLEX ROAD WARRIORS over BLACKWATER ELITE, 96-90 NLEX import Henry Walker made a big impression in his PBA return, scoring 44 points to lead his Road Warriors past the gutsy Blackwater Elite, 96-90, in the PBA Governors' Cup on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Walker shot 15-for-25 (60-percent) from the field and 6-for-13 (46-percent) from three-point range in an impressive offensive showing for NLEX.
Kevin Alas and Mac Baracael each added 12 markers for the Road Warriors, while Jonas Villanueva added 11.
Walker immediately put the league on notice after scoring an incredible 24 of his team's 31 points in the first quarter. He sizzled from beyond the arc, hitting his first four three-point attempts and finished the period shooting 5-for-7 from beyond the arc.
The NLEX import's explosive start allowed his Road Warriors to lead by as many as 17 points in the first stanza.
Lines of the Game: Henry Walker (NLX) - 44pts, 6rebs, 2asts, 2stls, 6 triples, 15/25 FGs Eric Dawson (BLA) - 27pts, 17rebs, 3asts, 2stls, 4blks, 11/18 FGs
BGY. GINEBRA GIN KINGS over GLOBALPORT BATANG PIER, 93-81 The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Kings, already missing star center Greg Slaughter, overcame an injury to import Paul Harris as they downed the GlobalPort Batang Pier, 93-81, in the PBA Governors' Cup on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Japeth Aguilar posted 21 points, six rebounds and two blocks to lead Ginebra while getting support from Sol Mercado (12 points), Chris Ellis (10 points), LA Tenorio (10 points) and Joe Devance (10 points).
Harris, who exited the game late in the third quarter with a broken right thumb, had 14 points, 10 rebounds, two assists and two blocks.
GlobalPort continued to battle throughout the game, but Tenorio proved steady from the free throw line as he helped Ginebra keep the margin up in the final minute.
Aguilar capped the victory with a big dunk in the endgame.
Pringle finished with 26 points, while Romeo added 15 markers.
MAHINDRA ENFORCERS over STAR HOTSHOTS, 100-92 The Mahindra Enforcers got off to a rousing start to their conference after outlasting the Star Hotshots in overtime, 100-92, in their PBA Governors' Cup opener last Friday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
22-year-old import James White bucked a slow start by scoring 18 of his 22 points in the second half and overtime, while Aldrech Ramos chipped in with 17 points for Mahindra.
The Enforcers' Asian import, Iranian Iman Zandi, also played a key role, going a perfect 5-for-5 from beyond the arc to finish with 15 points. Two other local players - KG Canaleta and Paolo Taha - finished in double figures.
Star's balik-import Marqus Blakely finished with 21 points, 15 rebounds and five assists in the defeat.
Mahindra started strong, largely on the strength of the performances of Zandi, who hit four three-pointers in the first half, and Ramos, who scored 10 markers.
Revilla made a big triple to open overtime and Ramos made a pair of free throws. Star's RR Garcia responded with a trey of his own, though, to keep things close, 92-90.
White and Allein Maliksi then traded baskets before Canaleta made a tough bank shot from the midrange to put again put some distance, 96-92, with 42 seconds left.
After a huge stop of the defensive end, Revilla all but sealed it with two free throws, 98-92, leaving just 23 seconds remaining on the game clock.
Lines of the Game: James White (MAH) - 22pts, 8rebs, 1blk, 10/18 FGs. Marqus Blakely (STA) - 21pts, 15rebs, 5asts, 2blks, 1stl.
MERALCO BOLTS over PHOENIX FUEL MASTERS, 108-103 Allen Durham bullied his way to a dominant outing while veteran point guard Jimmy Alapag provided some excellent support as Meralco took their PBA Governors' Cup opener, 108-103, over Phoenix on Friday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Durham finished with 32 points and 22 rebounds while Alapag had 15 points and team-high six assists to lead Meralco.
Jared Dillinger also finished with 15 points while Chris Newsome added 13. Cliff Hodge had 12 markers.
Phoenix import Marcus Simmons had 21 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists to lead the Fuel Masters.
Phoenix's most recent acquisition, former Alaska guard Cyrus Baguio, was in uniform but did not play.
Lines of the Game: Allen Durham (MER) - 32pts, 22rebs, 5asts, 1stl, 1blk, 10/20 FGs. Marcus Simmons (PHX) - 21pts, 11rebs, 7asts, 3stls, 1blk.
Talk N Text adds Little to their roster, ex Anyang KGC - 2 days ago
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Talk N Text Tropang Texters (PBA) added to their roster 29-year old American swingman Mario Little (198-99kg-87, college: Kansas). He played last season at Anyang KGC in South Korean KBL league. In 62 games he had very impressive stats: 16.8ppg, 4.1rpg and 2.7apg. Little's team made it to the Korean KBL Semifinals. He has played also professionally in Spain (La ICL Manresa), Ukraine (DniproAzot) and D-League (Oklahoma City Blue). Little attended University of Kansas until 2011 and it will... [read more]
Talk N Text Tropang Texters (PBA) added to their roster 29-year old American swingman Mario Little (198-99kg-87, college: Kansas). He played last season at Anyang KGC in South Korean KBL league. In 62 games he had very impressive stats: 16.8ppg, 4.1rpg and 2.7apg. Little's team made it to the Korean KBL Semifinals. He has played also professionally in Spain (La ICL Manresa), Ukraine (DniproAzot) and D-League (Oklahoma City Blue). Little attended University of Kansas until 2011 and it will be his sixth season as a professional player.
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