The TNT Tropang Giga and the San Miguel Beermen are sporting the same records and coming off victories on Friday. Which team will come out on top Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in this collision of traditional powerhouses?
Catch this game live on Sunday, December 17at 6:15 pm, Manila time.
TNT Tropang Giga (4-3)
Projected Starting Five:
- Kib Montalbo
- Glenn Khobuntin
- Calvin Oftana
- Rondae Hollis-Jefferson
- Kelly Williams
The Tropang Giga have scored back-to-back wins in the conference for the second time after defeating the NLEX Road Warriors last Wednesday (113-97) and the Blackwater Bossing Friday (105-96). They have yet to win three games in a row, making this tiff against the Beermen even more intriguing for the Tropang Giga, who are the highest-scoring team in the league so far in the Commissioner’s Cup.
They are putting up 110.3 points per game while also knocking down 47 percent of their shots from the floor – also the best in the PBA. Although their defense has been a little suspect this conference, the Tropang Giga have picked it up of late on that end of the court of late, as TNT hasn’t allowed more than 97 points in either of its last two outings. Just the assurance that they will not be dealing with Junemar Fajardo (injured) this Sunday is already a big plus for the Tropang Giga, as they continue to miss the services of former PBA Defensive Player of the Year JP Erram (recovering from surgery).
San Miguel Beermen (4-3)
Projected Starting Five:
- Chris Ross
- Don Trollano
- CJ Perez
- Ivan Aska
- Mo Tautuaa
The Beermen snapped a two-game skid by taking down sister ball club Barangay Ginebra San Miguel last Friday, 95-82. Before that, San Miguel suffered a 115-101 loss to the NorthPort Batang Pier and at the hands of the league-leading Magnolia Chicken Timplados Hotshots (94-90). The slim loss to the Hotshots provided a sign of just how good and dangerous the Beermen remain even without the hurting Fajardo.
Chriss Ross reached down for some youth vitamins and came up with a team-high 22 points versus the Barangay, while Jericho Cruz had 16 points coming off the bench. It’s difficult to count on Ross to be as productive again, as that was the only time he scored more than 10 points in a game this conference. What the Beermen want to see more is Aska being more assertive offensively after the import scored just 10 points on 10 shots in the Ginebra game. Also watch out for Beermen newcomer Don Trollano, who had an excellent debut in San Miguel uniform, scoring 16 points with three 3-pointers on Friday. The Beermen have also won three of the last four meetings with TNT.
Spread: TNT (+2.0) covers the spread.
Over/Under: The total (208.5) hits the Over.