The San Miguel Beermen are back in business after leveling the series against the TNT Tropang Giga. Will the Beermen get the series lead for the first time? Or, will the Tropang Giga reclaim the driver’s seat and move two wins away from winning the series?
Catch this game live on October 8 at 6 pm, Manila time.
The San Miguel Beermen (1-1)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Chris Ross
- SG: Terrence Romeo
- SF: Marcio Lassiter
- PF: Arwind Santos
- C: June Mar Fajardo
The Beermen avoided what would have been a disastrous 0-2 deficit in the semis against TNT, as they completed a comeback in Game 2 with a 98-96 victory to tie the series up. Terrence Romeo was feeling it all game long, bouncing back from a letdown performance in the series opener by dropping 26 points on 10-of-22 shooting from the field. Romeo, who scored just eight points in Game 1, will look to keep it going in Game 3 together with Junemar Fajardo.
The six-time MVP found his groove again in Game 2, as he finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds, and zero turnovers. Fajardo had six turnovers in Game 1, so his improved ball security in Game 2 is a good sign that he’s getting comfortable in the paint despite TNT’s best efforts to contain him. With Romeo and Fajardo humming, the Beermen can be more difficult to stop for TNT going forward. The Beermen have also gone 39-of-49 from the free throw line over the first two games of the series, while TNT is just 17-of-29. That speaks a lot about how the Beermen are having their way against the Tropang Giga’s defense.
The TNT Tropang Giga (1-1)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Brian Heruela
- SG: RR Pogoy
- SF: Mikey Williams
- PF: Troy Rosario
- C: Kelly Williams
Mikey Williams has to wake up. While Romeo has finally gotten his rhythm, TNT’s super rookie has gone cold in the semis. After scoring only seven points on 3-of-12 shooting in Game 1, Williams improved a bit in Game 2 with 12 points but it took him 16 shots to get there. At some point, he has to get hot, and he could be due for a semifinals breakout performance this Friday. Meanwhile, RR Pogoy is taking care of the business in the backcourt.
The former FEU Tamaraw has 44 points through two games of the series. The Tropang Giga might have been down 0-2 if not for Pogoy’s offense that is keeping the team afloat together with JP Erram. The big man put up a double-double of 20 points and 10 rebounds, while also sacrificing his body against Fajardo in Game 2. The Tropang Giga need to coax better production from Williams and Jayson Castro (1/10 FG in Game 2) plus be more disruptive in Game 3 to get the series lead back. They had nine steals in the series opener, but only recorded five in Game 2.
Spread: I’m expecting Mikey Williams to put up a much better performance in Game 3. Jayson Castro isn’t shooting 1-of-10 again, too. Tropang Giga score a close win and cover (-1.5)
Over/Under: If you believe Williams and Castro are going to get their acts together, you have to pound the Over (179.5).