Nio Caaleta has all the tools to dominate in the PBA. At 66, he has the size to be the perfect stretch forward (i.e. a combo forward) in the PBA. With his handles, shooting, and leaping ability, Caaleta is a more versatile scorer than another comparable stretch Arwind Santos, though, admittedly, Santos is better at the dirty work. Theres a reason, after all, that Santos, one of Caaletas old rivals from the UAAP, is at the very top of the PBAs Player Efficiency ladder.
Still, Caaleta has gone a helluva long way from the unsure and inconsistent slotman he was in college. When he was still playing for the UE Red Warriors, he found it difficult getting overshadowed by the likes of FEUs Santos and Mark Isip, Adamsons Ken Bono, and even Ateneos Paolo Bugia and Doug Kramer. He was forced to play center and bang bodies under the boards when he had the skill set of a natural swingman. He was a rare find in local hoops, but he wasnt exactly being maximized.
Now, with a team devoid of the star power prevalent in the PBAs more ballyhooed squads, Caaleta finally has the time of day to really strut his stuff. The 6th overall pick in the 2005 draft currently has the second highest player efficiency rating in Air 21s roster (only Mike Cortez is better). He is averaging a career-high 29 minutes per game, registering, unsurprisingly, his best scoring numbers yet 14.7ppg. Hes also norming nearly 6 rebounds per game for the first time since his sophomore season back in 06-07.
And, get this, those were his numbers BEFORE unloading 41 (yes, FORTY ONE markers) on the hapless Batang Pier to go along with 7 rebounds. With him finally breaking out in the biggest way possible, is Nio Caaleta finally ready to realize his vast potential and rise to the uppermost echelon of stars in the PBA?
Game Recaps: AIR 21 EXPRESS over GLOBAL PORT BATANG PIER, 113-92
KG Canaleta outdueled Gary David in their scoring battle and the athletic swingman towed the Air 21 Express to a 113-92 victory over the GlobalPort Batang Pier Wednesday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
The 6-foot-6, slam dunking forward set a new career-high with 41 points. He shot a steady 6-for-9 from beyond the arc, grabbed seven rebounds and came up with a highlight reel play that punctuated his big game against David, last seasons scoring champion.
When I got him (KG), I wanted him to prove himself and be considered as one of the top players in the PBA, said Air 21 coach Franz Pumaren. Hes really talented. It was just unfortunate that he played before for teams loaded with star players.
With this game, I hope it would be a springboard for him to play better in the playoffs, added Pumaren, whose team has already matched its total number of victories posted last season when the squad was known as Shopinas.com.
Canaleta set the tone early, scoring 21 points of his total output in the first half, the most scored by any player at the half this season.
With Canaleta catching fire, the Express, too, performed on a high level.
A backbreaking 18-2 run in the third quarter, capped by a jumper from James Sena, turned a close encounter into a rout and gave the Express an 80-59 lead.
The Batang Pier never recovered from there. The team lost its ninth straight game and fell to a 1-12 record.
When we lost the game to Ginebra, everybody was frustrated. Everybody came to practice really determined to bounce back to get ourselves in contention for a playoff spot, said Pumaren.
Good thing theyre out of the race already, but were wary of them and we dont want them to get their momentum because its so hard to play a team when theyre already out. But weve done our job today. We just have to wait depending on Fridays game.
GlobalPort will face San Mig Coffee in its final elimination round schedule on Friday at the MOA Arena.
A21 113- Canaleta 41, Sena 18, Reyes 12, arboleda 8, Omolon 7, Wilson 6, Cortez 5, Ritualo 5, Custodio 4, Isip 4, Andaya 2, Baclao 1, Atkins 0. GLO 92- Al-Hussaini 20, David 16, Manuel 11, Salvador 11, Mandani 8, Guevarra 5, Antonio 5, Yee 4, Miller 4, Lingganay 3, Vanlandingham 3, Vergara 2, Deutchman 0, Crisano 0. QS: 30-31; 60-55; 87-67; 113-92.
ALASKA ACES over PETRON BLAZE BOOSTERS, 79-71
Alaska has built a reputation in the Calvin Abueva era as a defensive, hustling team. Make the Aces the new comeback kids this time as well.
The Aces held the Petron Blaze Boosters to an all-time franchise low six points in the fourth quarter to complete a hard-earned come-from-behind victory on Wednesday night in the PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Down by 21 points in the closing minute of the third period, the Aces willed themselves to victory behind the efforts of JVee Casio, Abueva and Cyrus Baguio.
Casio and Abueva have recently returned from sick bay.
But neither injuries nor the Boosters could keep these Aces from spurring their team to a huge comeback win.
There were injuries all around, but these guys just willed themselves to victory. I was kind of quiet during the huddle and going through the motions, but guys just dont want to quit, said Alaska coach Luigi Trillo.
The Boosters were held down to only a single field goal for nearly nine minutes and saw their lead chopped down by repeated Alaska uprisings.
Arwind Santos broke the silence for the Boosters with a jumper, giving his squad a 69-63 lead.
JVee Casio scored on a triple to push the Aces within three, 69-66, but Chris Lutz had a jumper from the right corner.
That was the end of the line for the Boosters, though, who failed to score in the next 2:43 of the match and watched as the Aces scored the next 13 points.
Overall, the Boosters shot a measly 3-of-18 from the field (16.7%).
ALA 79- Baguio 20, Abueva 12, Casio 12, Hontiveros 10, Thoss 8, Espinas 7, Reyes 3, Baracael 3, Eman 2, Dela Cruz 2, Jazul 0, Laure 0, Belasco 0. PET 71- Lassiter 14, Santos 13, Cabagnot 11, Fajardo 10, Yeo 9, Miranda 8, Lutz 4, Ildefonso 2, Washington 0, Pena 0. QS: 19-25, 29-41, 46-65, 79-71.
Source: Unless otherwise specified, game recaps were compressed and compiled from InterAKTV. (Writing credit to Rey Joble.)
Big 2nd quarter leads Philippines to win over Sacramento State - 51 minutes ago
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The Philippines outscored Sacramento State in the second quarter, 31-12, and held a huge 48-6 advantage in free throw attempts on the way to an 88-69 victory over Sacramento State in the fourth round of the 38th-annual William Jones Cup in Taiwan. The Philippines, which has been among the best teams at the tournament thus far, improved to 3-0 at the eight-game, nine-day event, and is averaging 87.7 points per game. That includes comfortable victories over the Hornets, South Korea and Chin... [read more]
The Philippines outscored Sacramento State in the second quarter, 31-12, and held a huge 48-6 advantage in free throw attempts on the way to an 88-69 victory over Sacramento State in the fourth round of the 38th-annual William Jones Cup in Taiwan. The Philippines, which has been among the best teams at the tournament thus far, improved to 3-0 at the eight-game, nine-day event, and is averaging 87.7 points per game. That includes comfortable victories over the Hornets, South Korea and Chinese Taipei A. The Philippines is the only team the Hornets will play during the tournament that is not a national squad. The team plays in the Pilipinas Commercial Basketball League (PCBL) and has won championships in the Republica Cup three times in the last four years (2013, 2014, 2016). Sacramento State, which was playing its fourth game in four days, dropped to 1-3. After the Hornets defeated India in the tournament opener on Saturday, the Hornets have lost to South Korea, Iran and the Philippines, respectively. Iran and the Philippines are the lone undefeated teams remaining in the tournament and both have 3-0 records. Sacramento State will play its fifth game in as many days tomorrow when the Hornets take on Chinese Taipei B at 4 a.m. PDT. For the second straight game, the Hornets could not overcome a huge foul and free throw disparity. The Hornets were whistled for 22 more fouls than the Philippines (33-11) and went to the free throw line just six times. Conversely, the Philippines made a robust 48 trips to the charity stripe. Sacramento State actually converted on five more field goals in the game, but the Hornets went just 5-for-6 from the free throw line while the Philippines went 31-of-48 from the stripe. The Hornets' James Herrick (208-C), Joshua Patton (203-F), Justin Strings (201-F), Nick Hornsby (201-F) and Eric Stuteville (211-C) all had at least four fouls while Herrick fouled out in 11 minutes. Stuteville had three fouls during the game's first five minutes. Both teams played even in the first, third and fourth quarters, but the Philippines had a big second quarter. Sacramento State held its largest lead of the game at 19-12 with 4:35 remaining in the first quarter, and took its last lead of the contest at 29-28 on a turnaround jumper from Grant Dressler with 6:40 left in the second. However, the Philippines would close the final 6:31 of the second quarter on a 26-6 run to go into halftime with a 54-35 lead. Both teams scored 15 points in the third quarter and 19 points in the fourth quarter. Sacramento State outrebounded the Philippines, 46-40, while shooting .361 (30-83) from the field and .211 (4-19) from the 3-point line. Both teams combined for just 22 turnovers, and the Philippines shot .385 (25-65) from the field and .304 (7-23) from the 3-point line. For the Hornets, Dressler scored a game-high 16 points on 7-of-16 shooting from the field while also pulling seven rebounds. He was joined in double figures by guard Jeff Wu (188-G), who had 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field. Strings, who had scored in double figures in each of the first three games of the tournament, was held scoreless but did have seven rebounds. Patton, who is a redshirt freshman, grabbed a game-high nine rebounds while also notching a team-best two blocked shots. Stuteville and guards Jiday Ugbaja (180-PG) and Matt Battaglia (183-PG) each scored eight points. Battaglia, a true freshman from El Dorado Hills, was a proficient 3-for-4 from the field, including a pair of 3-pointers. Ugbaja was 4-for-6 from the floor. Guard Marcus Graves (183-PG) added six points, five rebounds and a team-high tying three assists while Trevis Jackson (180-PG) had three rebounds and three assists. Hornsby had four points and three rebounds in 13 minutes. Sacramento State plays tomorrow against a Chinese Taipei B squad that is 1-2, but all three of its games have been decided by eight points or less. That includes an 81-80 victory today over the Chinese Taipei A team. Courtesy of: hornetsports.com
Al Thornton scores 24 points to lead PH-Mighty Sports' rout of South Korea - 1 day ago
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Al Thornton (203-F-83, college: Florida St.) scored 24 points as he carried Philippines-Mighty Sports pummeled South Korea, 86-65, to notch its second straight victory in the 2016 William Jones Cup Monday in Taiwan. Thornton also had seven boards as he sank crucial baskets to pace PH-Mighty Sports which is now 2-0 in the tournament. Zach Graham (198-G-89, college: Mississippi, agency: Pro Sports) added 13 points, while Dewarick Spencer(193-G-82, college: Arkansas St., agency: Higher Visio... [read more]
Al Thornton (203-F-83, college: Florida St.) scored 24 points as he carried Philippines-Mighty Sports pummeled South Korea, 86-65, to notch its second straight victory in the 2016 William Jones Cup Monday in Taiwan. Thornton also had seven boards as he sank crucial baskets to pace PH-Mighty Sports which is now 2-0 in the tournament. Zach Graham (198-G-89, college: Mississippi, agency: Pro Sports) added 13 points, while Dewarick Spencer (193-G-82, college: Arkansas St., agency: Higher Vision Sports) contributed 12 markers. PH-Mighty Sports got off to a 12-5 start, but Korea made a run and took the lead, 18-17. However, Thornton exploded for five straight points, including a buzzer-beating trey, to give his team a 22-17 edge after the opening quarter. PH-Mighty Sports pulled away in the second quarter thanks to a 19-7 run that handed them a 41-24 lead. Halftime ended at 45-31 with PH-Mighty Sports led by Spencer's 10 points and Thornton's nine markers. Korea tried several times to come back, trimming its deficit to eight, 51-43, in the third quarter. But Mike Singletary converted an and one to bring PH-Mighty Sports' lead to 11, 54-43. They took a 59-45 cushion entering the final frame. Korea once again threatened for a serious run after coming within eight, 65-57, early in the fourth quarter. However, PH-Mighty Sports had another answer, with Thornton draining a triple and completing an and one play to push their lead, 71-57, and keep the Koreans at bay. Courtesy of: interaksyon.com
White's double-double lands him Player of the Week award - 2 days ago
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23-year old forward James White (203-F-93) put on an amazing game in the last round for league's best team Mahindra E. and receives a Asia-basket.com Player of the Week award for round 2.
He had a double-double of 28 points and 20 rebounds, while his team beat Globalport (#11, 0-3), the league's bottom-ranked team 108-98. It allowed Mahindra E. to take over top position in the Filipino league. But it's just the very beginning of the season and Mahindra E. won both games without losing an... [read more]
23-year old forward James White (203-F-93) put on an amazing game in the last round for league's best team Mahindra E. and receives a Asia-basket.com Player of the Week award for round 2. He had a double-double of 28 points and 20 rebounds, while his team beat Globalport (#11, 0-3), the league's bottom-ranked team 108-98. It allowed Mahindra E. to take over top position in the Filipino league. But it's just the very beginning of the season and Mahindra E. 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 White had a remarkable 56.3% from 2-point range. He has many years of experience at Mahindra E., through which he has constantly improved. Georgia Tech graduate has very impressive stats this year. White is in league's top in points (6th best: 25.0ppg), rebounds (3rd best: 14.0rpg) and averages solid 2.5bpg and 55.9% FGP.
Second best performed player last round was Marqus Blakely (201-F-88) of Purefoods Star. He is American forward in his first season at Purefoods Star. In the last game Blakely recorded impressive double-double of 24 points and 22 rebounds. It was enough for Purefoods Star to edge Globalport (0-3) by 3 points 105-102. The season is still at the very beginning and this victory may help a lot. Let's wait for the next round. Blakely is one of the most experienced players at Purefoods Star and has a reputation of one of team's most reliable players.
Third place about best performers goes to swingman Dominique Sutton (198-G/F-86) of Globalport (#11). Sutton got into 30-points club by scoring 34 points in the last round. He went also for thirteen rebounds and seven assists. Despite Sutton's great performance Globalport lost 98-108 to Mahindra E. (#1, 2-0). But his team cannot count on just a single shooter as he also needs help of the other teammates. Globalport can only dream about fighting for top spots in the league. They have awful season losing so far all 3 games. Sutton has individually a great season in Philippines. After only 2 games, he made it on the list of the league's leaders in points with 26.0ppg (5th best), rebounds with 14.0rpg (2nd best) and assists with 5.0apg (8th best).
Other top performing players last week: 4. Justin Brownlee (197-F-88) of Barangay Ginebra - 31 points and 13 rebounds 5. Henry Walker (198-G/F-87) of NLEX RW - 33 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists 6. Dior Lowhorn (201-F-87) of Rain or Shine - 26 points and 14 rebounds 7. Michael Glover (203-F-87) of Globalport - 27 points, 12 rebounds and 5 assists 8. LaDontae Henton (198-F-92) of Alaska Aces - 29 points and 9 rebounds 9. Ian Paul Sangalang (201-F/C-91) of Purefoods Star - 18 points and 6 rebounds 10. Jayson Castro William (180-PG-86) of Talk N Text - 19 points, 6 rebounds and 10 assists
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)
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