The Meralco Bolts and the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel will each play their last game of the elimination round of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup against each other. Which between them gets the W?
Catch this game live on September 23 at 2 pm, Manila time.
The Meralco Bolts (8-2)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: John Pinto
- SG: Chris Newsome
- SF: Mac Belo
- PF: John Quinto
- C: Raymond Almazan
The Bolts scored a huge 104-101 win on Wednesday over the NLEX Road Warriors, thus guaranteeing themselves a seat in the quarterfinals of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup. Meralco waxed hot from the outside to keep its sister team at bay. The Bolts went 13-of-21 from behind the arc and shot 53 percent from the field. Mac Belo and Allein Maliksi drained four 3-pointers each and combined for 38 points to help the Bolts weather the ejection of Chris Newsome from the game early.
If anything, that ejection gives Newsome more time to rest ahead of the meeting with the Barangay. Raymond Almazan also is on a roll, and he should be a problem for the Japeh Aguilar-less Ginebra. Almazan has scored 28 points and grabbed 21 rebounds over the last two Meralco games. The Bolts are on a three-game win streak and are 6-1 over their last seven games.
The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel (4-6)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: LA Tenorio
- SG: Stanley Pringle
- SF: Arvin Tolentino
- PF: Joe Devance
- C: Christian Standhardinger
Inconsistency is plaguing the Barangay, and it’s definitely hurting their chances for a more favorable spot in the playoffs. They are coming off an 89-75 loss to the Alaska Aces and are now just 1-3 in their last four games, a stretch that also featured losses to the TNT Tropang Giga and the San Miguel Beermen. What’s making things worse for Ginebra is the temporary absences of two dependable pieces in Scottie Thompson and Japeth Aguilar.
Thompson landed on the injured list, while Aguilar is also out due to a lower-body injury. These recent developments only add pressure on the shoulders of those who are left behind. LA Tenorio, Stanley Pringle, and Christian Stanhardinger, however, still form a formidable trio. And with Thompson out, more will be asked from Arvin Tolentino and Aljon Mariano. Ginebra is averaging 84.8 points per game on 41.6 FG% — second-best overall — so far in the conference.
Spread: Meralco hands the undermanned Barangay a loss, take the Bolts +3.5.
Over/Under: The Bolts will not be as hot from deep in this game. Take the Under 175.5.