Sister teams NLEX Road Warriors and Meralco Bolts meet head to head in the second game of this Saturday’s doubleheader at  Ynares Center in Antipolo. Will the Road Warriors prevent a two-game skid? Or, will the Bolts get their fourth win of the conference?

Catch this game live on Saturday,  June 25 at 7:15 pm, Manila time.

The NLEX Road Warriors (2-2)

Projected Starting Five:

  • PG: Kevin Alas
  • SG: Don Trollano
  • SF: Calvin Oftana
  • PF: Marion Magat
  • C: Justin Chua

NLEX still couldn’t stitch together consecutive wins this conference. The Road Warriors were on the verge of doing that last Wednesday when they were up big against the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel at the half, but they failed to stifle the Barangay’s fightback in the final two periods, resulting in an 83-75 loss. NLEX is being toughened up by a brutal early conference schedule, having already faced the San Miguel Beermen, TNT Tropang Giga, and Ginebra. 

The Road Warriors went just 1-2 during that stretch but looked competitive in all of them. If anything, that’s a good sign for them heading into a matchup against Meralco, which has yet to beat an elite title contender so far this conference. Kevin Alas and Calvin Oftana are playing at a high level in the 2022 PBA Philippine Cup. Oftana is always going to be a problem on the floor for the opposing team as well as NLEX’s bench that is no. 1 overall with 51.2 points per contest.


The Meralco Bolts (3-1)

Projected Starting Five:

  • PG: Aaron Black
  • SG: Chris Newsome
  • SF: Allein Maliksi
  • PF: Cliff Hodge
  • C: Raymond Almazan

Aaron Black is the real deal. After sitting out Meralco’s 78-71 loss to the Tropang Giga because of a hand issue, Black returned to action Thursday against the NorthPort Batang Pier and erased all fears about his health by scoring 20 points on an excellent 9/12 shooting from the field to go with 7 assists and 5 rebounds. He’s delivered double-digit scoring production in each game he’s played so far in the conference, and he could continue that streak against an NLEX’s seemingly faulty defense that is allowing 93.5 points per game. 

Even the Terrafirma Dyip dropped 102 points on the Road Warriors earlier this month. Chris Banchero is also clicking right now. He had 12 points in a spot start during Black’s absence in the TNT game and scored 16 points off the bench in the win over the Batang Pier.  Meanwhile, Chris Newsome is looking to rebound after coughing up just 7 points against NorthPort. He had 18 points and 8 rebounds in the last time Meralco and NLEX met, which ended with a 110-100 win for the Bolts last February.


Spread: NLEX covers (+4.5).

Over/Under: The Over (178.5) hits.