San Miguel Beermen and Meralco Bolts are back in a best-of-five playoff series after splitting the first two games.
In Game One, the Beermen were overpowering in a 121-97 win, but the Bolts were deadly in their 99-88 comeback victory against the SMB on Friday.
Both teams have placed their cards on the table, including the reshuffle by Meralco under returning head coach Norman Black.
It’s turning into a battle of attrition, and each side is determined to win Game Three in order to gain a significant advantage.
Sunday at 6:30 p.m. at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, the Beermen and the Bolts battle for a 2-1 advantage.
After overcoming a 17-point deficit and narrowly tying the score in the previous game, Black believed they had the greater responsibility of game adjustment.
“We have to do something about our zone offense because that’s how they came back in Game 2,” said Black, whose team wasted a massive lead but, thanks to the solid performance of Toto Jose, Aaron Black, and Chris Newsome, eventually regained the advantage.
We had the game under control until they went zone, at which point we struggled, so we will seek to improve in this area.
Beermen and Bolts aiming for 2-1 scores
The Beermen have the luxury of playing zone because to their large roster, anchored by 6-foot-10 center June Mar Fajardo, who is dominating. Rodney Brondial, a 6-foot-5 forward who has dramatically improved, has also been a tremendous asset.
The Bolts are capitalizing on their better performance and good morale, particularly since they are already 2-1 against the Beermen in the elimination round.
Black’s return, which the Lightning greeted with a swashbuckling start in Game Two, provided another lift.
Concerning the Bolts is the Beermen’s tendency to play aggressively after a defeat.
And Fajardo and his colleagues anticipate a solid start on Sunday.
“It’s always crucial to gain the lead in a tied series,” stated Leo Austria, head coach of San Miguel. (SB)
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