The Converge FiberXers will get its first PBA test this coming Sunday, as they make their debut in Asia’s first pay-for-play league against the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters. Will the FiberXers download a victory from the get-go? Or will the Elasto Painters paint Converge with a loss?
Catch this game live on Sunday, June 5 at 4:30 pm, Manila time.
The Converge FiberXers (0-0)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Michael DiGregorio
- SG: Mike Tolomia
- SF: Jeron Teng
- PF: Kevin Racal
- C: Ben Adamos
The FiberXers will look to make their PBA debut even more memorable with a win against Rain or Shine. While the franchise is new, the pieces that consist Converge are not, with remnants of the last Alaska Aces team still on the roster and on the coaching staff of the FiberXers. Coached by Jeffrey Cariaso, Converge can lean on its guard depth with Mike DiGregorio, Mike Tolomia providing veteran leadership while the up-and-coming RK Ilagan could be the surprise of the season for the FiberXers.
Jeron Teng, meanwhile, is the leader of the group. In Alaska’s farewell conference, Teng led all Aces locals with 12.9 points per game to go with 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per contest. The FiberXers are also welcoming towering rookies with a pair of 6-7 centers in Jeo Ambohot and Justin Arana, who could carve out big roles right away, with both Bryan Faundo and Abu Tratter still in contract negotiation with Converge, as of this writing.
The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (0-0)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Rey Nambatac
- SG: Shaun Ildefonso
- SF: Gabe Norwood
- PF: Mike Nieto
- C: Beau Belga
Rain or Shine was once the new kid on the block in the PBA, and now, the Elast Painters are aiming to give the FiberXers a baptism on fire on Sunday. Rey Nambatac leads the cast of Elasto Painters in this all-locals conference after averaging 16.7 points per game in the 2021 Governors’ Cup. However, the Elasto Painters might not have Javee Mocon, who is still having contract issues with the team.
Mocon is an integral piece of the Elasto Painters, but if he won’t be there on Sunday, Rain or Shine can fill the void by perhaps letting shiny newcomers in the forms of rookies Gian Mamuyac and Shaun Ildefonso. The frontcourt is as tough as nails as always for Rain or Shine, with Beau Belga leading the charge alongside vets Jewel Ponferada and Norbert Torres. In the last conference, Rain or Shine featured a stout defense that allowed 105.2 points per 100 possessions.
Spread: Rain or Shine covers (-3.5).
Over/Under: Taking the Under (170.5) for this game.