Boy, when the Petron Blaze Boosters are on, they are ON.
They opened up a tight game in the third period, outscoring the Elasto-Painters, 33-12, and then cruised to an easy win only their fourth in ten games.
Former Smart-Gilas standout Chris Lutz was on fire here, hitting 7 of his 11 field goals, including 4 triples. He also grabbed 5 rebounds and dished out 5 assists to punctuate a good all-around performance. Arwind Santos had a monster double-double line consisting of 16 points and 15 boards while frontcourt mate Jay Washington, who has been the meat of recent trade rumors, had 14 markers and 6 caroms. Three other Boosters finished in double-digits.
Despite having a depleted frontline, the Boosters held their own against the vaunted Extra Rice Boys of Rain or Shine. Beau Belga, JR Quiahan, Jervy Cruz, and Larry Rodriguez all actually finished in double-figures, but this was offset by the Painters anemic outside shooting. They made good on just 18% of their threes and shot just 36% overall from the floor. This is only the third loss for the Painters, who are in solo third place behind Talk N Text and San Mig Coffee.
Game Recaps: AIR 21 EXPRESS over ALASKA ACES, 104-103
Mark Isip played an unfamiliar role Wednesday night, drilling in the game-winning basket and leading the Air 21 Express to their third straight victory of the season following a tense 104-103 squeaker over the hard-fighting Alaska Aces in the PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
The 6-foot-4 forward received a pass from Mike Cortez, who was double-teamed on his way to the basket. Isip unleashed a short jumper over the outstretched arms of Sonny Thoss and his shot bounced off the rim before going in, giving the Express the marginal basket.
Our play was for our guards to create something going to the basket. Good thing Mike had the presence of mind to pass it out to an open Mark Isip, said Air 21 coach Franz Pumaren, who posted the first three-game winning streak of his PBA coaching career.
More importantly, the Express victory put them into a tie for sixth to seventh spots of the team standings.
The Aces, on the other hand, absorbed their third straight loss after a string of five consecutive victories. They fell to an even 5-5 record.
Alaska, however, fought back from double-digit deficits in the second half and appeared to be headed to complete a come-from-behind behind the solid games of Mac Baracael and rookie Calvin Abueva, who had six straight points in the span of one minute.
Id like to give credit to Alaska. They refused to quit, but its a good thing we were able to keep our poise down the stretch, added Pumaren.
PETRON BLAZE BOOSTERS over RAIN OR SHINE ELASTO-PAINTERS, 96-86
Playing with a sense of urgency, Petron Blaze faced a real test against emerging contender Rain or Shine.
And the short-handed Boosters responded to the challenge.
The Boosters had six players that finished in double figures with Chris Lutz leading the way, but it was Petrons defense against one of the hottest teams in the tournament that proved to be the difference in their 96-86 triumph in the PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday.
Uso ang bull session sa mga teams na nag-struggle, said Petron coach Olsen Racela. We reminded each other to stop talking, but its time to start to play.
The key to this win is that we limit the No. 2 offensive team. We held them down tonight, he added.
The Boosters came out of the halftime break fresh and full of energy as they clamped down on the Elasto Painters big guns. Petron limited Rain or Shine to just 12 third-quarter points, while unloading 33 points at the other end to turn an expected tight struggle into a rout.
Rain or Shine trailed by 22 points, 57-79, entering the last quarter. They made a huge run in the fourth, but simply ran out of time.
We needed a win badly, not just for the team standings, but also to get our confidence back, said Racela. I was also having doubts myself after we lost three straight games, but the players helped me and I got my confidence back.
In snapping a three-game slide, the Boosters improved their record to 4-6.
Lutz finished with 19 points followed by Arwind Santos 16. Jay Washington contributed 14 markers while Marcio Lassiter chipped in 12.
Alex Cabagnot had 11 and Denok Miranda added 10 in a display of balanced firepower by the undermanned Petron squad.
The 2016-2017 PBA Philippine Cup continued to heat up this week. Phoenix had a big upset win over SMB last Wednesday, while Rain or Shine also throttled past Mahindra. Just last night, it was GlobalPort who prevailed over Star even as TNT handed Blackwater its first loss of the season. Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon): PHOENIX FUEL MASTERS over SAN MIGUEL BEERMEN, 92-85 The Phoenix Fuel Masters got a big game from JC Intal plus some key contributions from Simon Enciso and a few... [read more]
The 2016-2017 PBA Philippine Cup continued to heat up this week. Phoenix had a big upset win over SMB last Wednesday, while Rain or Shine also throttled past Mahindra. Just last night, it was GlobalPort who prevailed over Star even as TNT handed Blackwater its first loss of the season.
Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon):
PHOENIX FUEL MASTERS over SAN MIGUEL BEERMEN, 92-85 The Phoenix Fuel Masters got a big game from JC Intal plus some key contributions from Simon Enciso and a few others as they picked up a big win over the San Miguel Beermen, 92-85, in the Oppo PBA Philippine Cup on Wednesday at the Ynares Center.
Intal scored 22 points and made some clutch baskets while Enciso dominated in a red-hot stretch in the third quarter to finish with 15 points and nine assists.
Other strong performers included rookies Matthew Wright and Gelo Alolino, who scored 14 and 13 points respectively, and Willy Wilson, who only mustered six points but grabbed 18 big rebounds alongside four assists.
Reigning MVP June Mar Fajardo finished with 19 points and 24 rebounds to lead the Beermen.
Lines of the Game: Simon Enciso (PHX) - 15pts, 7rebs, 9asts, 5 triples. June Mar Fajardo (SMB) - 19pts, 24rebs.
RAIN OR SHINE ELASTO-PAINTERS over MAHINDRA FLOODBUSTER, 105-83 James Yap finally made his much-anticipated debut for the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters who put on an epic shooting display, pouring in a total of 18 three-pointers to drown the hapless Mahindra Floodbuster, 105-83, in the Oppo PBA Philippine Cup Wednesday at Ynares Center in Antipolo.
Yap, who missed Rain or Shine's season opener last week, contributed 10 points and achieved a career milestone by moving to fifth on the all-time three-pointers made list in his first game since being traded by his former long-time squad Star Hotshots in a blockbuster deal during the off-season.
Jericho Cruz scored 14 of his 15 points in the first half, spiked by four triples, as well as three rebounds and four assists to lead Rain or Shine's balanced attack that saw 14 of its 15 players make at least one field goal.
Alex Mallari had a double-double of 10 points and 10 boards to lead Mahindra which dropped its second straight game. Philip Paniamogan also had 10 points, while rookie Russell Escoto grabbed eight boards along with his 10 markers.
Lines of the Game: Maverick Ahanmisi (ROS) - 14pts, 4rebs, 4asts, 1stl. Alex Mallari (MAH) - 10pts, 10rebs, 1stl.
GLOBALPORT BATANG PIER over STAR HOTSHOTS, 91-84 The GlobalPort Batang Pier leapt out to a huge lead in the first quarter and did enough to protect it the rest of the way as they beat the Star Hotshots, 91-84, in the Oppo PBA Philippine Cup on Friday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Stanley Pringle scored 24 points - 12 of those in a blistering first quarter for the Batang Pier - while Terrence Romeo added 18 points and eight assists, though he did have seven turnovers.
KG Canaleta added 12 markers and seven boards while JR Quinahan scored just six points but grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out four assists in a solid performance.
Marc Pingris and Aldrech Ramos paired up for 37 points to pace Star.
Lines of the Game: Stanley Pringle (GLO) - 24pts, 3rebs, 2asts, 2stls, 1blk. Marc Pingris (STA) - 19pts, 8rebs, 2asts, 2stls, 1blk.
TNT KA TROPA over BLACKWATER ELITE, 99-92 Jayson Castro made a triumphant return for the TNT KaTropa as they slammed the erstwhile unbeaten Blackwater Elite, 99-92, for a second consecutive win in the Oppo PBA Philippine Cup on Friday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Mo Tautuaa and Castro each scored 20 points for TNT, which tied their victims in the standings at 2-1.
Tautuaa shot 8-for-12 from the field, including 2-for-3 from beyond the arc while Castro had five rebounds and five assists. Ranidel De Ocampo added 15 points, eight rebounds and four assists in a strong showing.
Blackwater's super rookie Mac Belo, who led them to two straight wins to open the season, finished with 21 points and nine rebounds for the Elite in the loss.
Lines of the Game: Jayson Castro (TNT) - 20pts, 5rebs, 5asts. Mac Belo (BLA) - 21pts, 9rebs, 2asts, 1stl.
Mac Belo gets MVP of the Week award for Filipino PBA - 2 days ago
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Mac Belo (190-F-93) put on an amazing game in the last round for league's leader Blackwater and that's him to receive a Asia-basket.com Player of the Week award for round 2. The 23-year old forward had the game-high 25 points adding six rebounds for Blackwater in his team's victory, helping them to edge out Meralco Bolts (#10, 0-1), the league's bottom-ranked team 86-84. It allowed Blackwater to consolidate first place in the Filipino PBA. But it's just the very beginning of the season an... [read more]
Mac Belo (190-F-93) put on an amazing game in the last round for league's leader Blackwater and that's him to receive a Asia-basket.com Player of the Week award for round 2. The 23-year old forward had the game-high 25 points adding six rebounds for Blackwater in his team's victory, helping them to edge out Meralco Bolts (#10, 0-1), the league's bottom-ranked team 86-84. It allowed Blackwater to consolidate first place in the Filipino PBA. But it's just the very beginning of the season and Blackwater won both games without losing any. It's too early to say anything as the standings can be changed completely after next round. In the team's last game Belo had a remarkable 53.8% from 2-point range. He turned to be Blackwater's top player in his first season with the team. Belo has impressive league stats. He is in league's top in points (8th best: 21.0ppg) and averages solid 66.7% FGP.
The second most remarkable performance in last round's games was 27-year old center June Mar Fajardo (210-C-89) of SM Beermen. Fajardo impressed basketball fans with a double-double of 19 points and 24 rebounds. Bad luck as SM Beermen lost that game 85-92 to Phoenix (1-1). The season is still at the very beginning and this lost game may not be such crucial, of course if they start win the games. Let's wait for the next round. Fajardo is one of the most experienced players at SM Beermen and has a reputation of one of team's most reliable players. He belongs to the best scorers in the league with 25.0ppg (#3). He also registered 16.0 boards per game.
The third best performed player last round was Lewis Tenorio (177-PG-84) of B.Ginebra (#9). Tenorio scored 27 points and passed six assists. Despite Tenorio's great performance B.Ginebra lost 103-108 to TNT Ka Tropa (#6, 1-1). But his team cannot count on just a single shooter as he also needs help of the other teammates. B.Ginebra can only dream about fighting for top spots in the league. They have awful season losing so far all 1 games. Too bad for Tenorio he does not play for a better team. But maybe if he did, his season stats would not be that high. The season just started for Tenorio as he played only first game. But it already looks like he can be team's leader.
Other top performing players last week: 4. Clifford Hodge (196-PF-88) of Meralco Bolts - 14 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists 5. Willy Wilson (188-G/F-81) of Phoenix - 6 points, 18 rebounds and 4 assists 6. Maverick Ahanmisi (188-G-91) of Rain or Shine - 14 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists 7. Ranidel deOcampo (197-F-81) of TNT Ka Tropa - 22 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists 8. Joe Devance (201-C-82) of B.Ginebra - 15 points, 4 rebounds and 9 assists 9. Earl Thompson) of B.Ginebra - 13 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists 10. JC Intal (193-C-83) of Phoenix - 22 points and 4 rebounds
The Player of the week is chosen based on efficiency calculation, but also including game result, importance of the game, if played recorded double-double/triple-double, etc. The efficiency formula is a combination of various formulas used by different basketball organizations/leagues. We got involved many basketball scouts and journalists to assure it's accuracy. The formula: 1.5*PTS + 3* (REB+AST+ST+BL-TO) - 2*BSAG - 4*PF + 3*PFRV + 4* (2FGPM+3FGPM) + 1.5*FTM - 3* (2FGPA-2FGPM) - 3* (3FGPA-3FGPM) - (FTA-FTM)
Blackwater Elite rookie Mac Belo (190-F-93) is turning out to be the real thing. The number one pick in the rookie draft scored 12 of his 25 points to lead a late comeback and win, 86-84, over the Meralco Bolts last Sunday (November 27, Manila time) in the first game of the double-header at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City. The win notches the Elite's second victory in as many outings and best start in the franchise's young history. Belo, had an all-around effort adding six re... [read more]
The number one pick in the rookie draft scored 12 of his 25 points to lead a late comeback and win, 86-84, over the Meralco Bolts last Sunday (November 27, Manila time) in the first game of the double-header at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
The win notches the Elite's second victory in as many outings and best start in the franchise's young history.
Belo, had an all-around effort adding six rebounds, three steals and two blocks, with the last from a Reynel Hugnatan's (193-F-78) layup attempt, in 36 minutes of play.
Denok Miranda (183-PG-82) added 11 points, capping the night with an off-balanced jumper in the ensuing play that broke the deadlock with 3.8 seconds left on the clock.
Ranidel de Ocampo (197-F-81) led the charge for TNT, who came down from 14 points in the payoff period to stun the Season 42 debuting Kings.
De Ocampo scored 15 of his 22 points in the comeback, rookie Roger Ray Pogoy (189-SG-92) and guard Larry Fonacier (185-F/G-82) added 15 points each.
TNT is still missing the services of top point guard Jayson Castro (180-PG-86).
Ginebra was led by LA Tenorio (177-PG-84) who registered 27 markers, six assists, three rebounds and two steals while Japeth Aguilar (206-C-85, college: W.Kentucky) and Joe Devance (201-C-82, college: UTEP) contributed 15 points each in a losing effort.
Aris Ignacio is from the Philippines and has always been a big fan of Philippine basketball. Aris' follows the Philippine Basketball Association since the late 80's and has learned the history and personalities of the PBA. He also has interest with other basketball tournaments in the Philippines and beyond most specifically college basketball (UAAP, NCAA), the Asian Basketball League (ABL), FIBA Asia and World Cup tournaments. Follow Aris Ignacio on Twitter at aris_ignacio.
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