The TNT Tropang Giga snagged an 89-88 win in Game 1 over the San Miguel Beermen to get an early 1-0 lead in this semifinals series. However, the Tropang Giga know that it can’t afford to relax, considering the firepower on the side of the Beermen. Which team will get the W in Game 2?
Catch this game live on October 6 at 3 pm, Manila time.
The San Miguel Beermen (0-1)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Chris Ross
- SG: Terrence Romeo
- SF: Marcio Lassiter
- PF: Arwind Santos
- C: June Mar Fajardo
Terrence Romeo still isn’t in his top form, as evidenced by the mere eight points he scored on 3-of-10 shooting from the field in Game 1. But despite Romeo’s relatively silent offensive performance, the Beermen came very close to taking down TNT. That speaks volumes about the depth of San Miguel’s roster, which has the luxury of having CJ Perez on the bench. Perez erupted for 23 points in Game 1 and will continue to be a key factor the the Beermen. Junemar Fajardo led the starters with 13 points and 11 rebounds in the series opener.
There’s no better option for the Beermen for points than Fajardo, who was a +11 in Game 1. His combination of skill and size is a problem that TNT will deal with for as long as this series goes. However, the Beermen need to stop shooting themselves in the foot with errors. They committed 23 turnovers in Game 1 which were converted into 23 points by TNT. Despite their Game 1 blunders, there’s no doubt that the Beermen are a terrifyingly good team once its pieces starts to click.
The TNT Tropang Giga (1-0)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Brian Heruela
- SG: RR Pogoy
- SF: Mikey Williams
- PF: Troy Rosario
- C: Kelly Williams
A lot of eyes were on Mikey Williams in Game 1, as people expected him to put on a show as TNT’s top scorer. But RR Pogoy was quick to remind them that he’s just as lethal on offense. With Williams struggling offensively, finishing just seven points on a salty 3-of-12 shooting from the field, the Tropang Giga leaned on Pogoy, and he delivered with 23 points. Jayson Castro, meanwhile, scored 16 points off the bench. Williams could get his rhythm soon, and once he does, that would put so much stress on San Miguel’s defense that’s allowing 91.21 points per game — the worst among all remaining teams this conference.
TNT had nine steals in Game 1 to just four by the Beermen, and with all the turnovers they forced, the Tropang Giga managed to get 17 more field goal attempts than SMB. Giving that many extra shots for such a talented offensive team like TNT is a nail in the coffin already of Tropang Giga opponents. JP Erram, personified TNT’s stout defense in Game 1, as he stood his ground against Fajardo, and while the six-time MVP had his double-double, he also committed six turnovers.
Spread: The Beermen almost completed a comeback in Game 1. Expect a steadier play from beginning to end for SMB in Game 2. Take SMB to win and cover (-1.5).
Over/Under: Game 1 went under with Romeo and Williams shooting blanks. At least one of those guys is going to put it together in Game 2. Take the Over. (177.0).