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Has Alapag passed torch to Amer?… JRU coach points out Teodoro weakness… What’s the real score with Reid?

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On the night he couldn’t play for Meralco, veteran Jimmy Alapag watched with delight from the bench as he sees his understudy Baser Amer play the role of a hero. Amer capped off his heroics with another jumper that practically sealed the Meralco’s fourth win, drawing a huge smile on the face of Alapag. “Absolutely,” answered Alapag. “That’s part of my role here, to do what I can on the court, to help the team win, but at the same time, do my best to help mentor Baser.”

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GETTING sidelined hardly worried Jimmy Alapag about Meralco’s offense in its PBA Governors’ Cup game against NLEX on Wednesday night. “It was more just muscle tightness and maybe thirty-eight-year-old-itis kicked in,” Alapag said with a smile after the Bolts held off the Road Warriors, 101-95. “But I’ll be fine.” “But I was happy Baser came out and hit some big shots in the endgame and most importantly, we got the win,” he added.

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Rookie Baser Amer took over in the endgame, pouring all seven of his points in the final two minutes as the Meralco Bolts fended off sister team NLEX, 101-95 in their PBA Governors Cup match on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. “This is a really good team effort on our part,” said a relieved Meralco coach Norman Black. “We got a lot of contribution from a lot of people. And we showed a lot of that in this game

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MERALCO refused to get bullied by sister squad NLEX anew as it hacked out a 101-95 victory on Wednesday in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum. The Bolts, who have lost to the Road Warriors, the youngest franchise in the MVP group, in recent meetings, restored order in their sibling rivalry as they proved steadier down the stretch to pull off their second straight win – and fifth overall in eight games. “This was a really good team effort on our part today,” Bolts coach Norman Black said. “Allen Durham was again the best player, but we got a lot of contributions from a lot of people. And we needed all of that against NLEX.”

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ALLEN Durham scattered 31 points but his less heralded teammates shared the limelight as Meralco squeaked past NLEX 101-95 last night in the PBA Governors Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. “We needed all of those just to get a win against NLEX today. It was a really hard-fought game,” said Black. “All the credit goes to my players for their teamwork, both offensively and defensively. They displayed a lot of teamwork tonight,” said Black after his charges finished with 26 assists.

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Meralco bolstered its quarterfinal chances after nipping NLEX, 101-95, in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum. Import Allen Durham dominated anew with 31 points and 17 rebounds but the Bolts also had Baser Amer stepping up down the stretch with all of his seven points coming inside the final two minutes.

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Mac Cardona’s condition continues to get better after suffering from pill overdose, according to NLEX team manager Ronald Dulatre on Wednesday. “We already transferred Macmac Monday midnight to Makati Medical Center – one of the companies under MVP Group,” the statement read. “His condition is improving but he cannot yet accept visitors as advised by his Doctors.”

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Despite NLEX’s painful 101-95 loss to sister team Meralco, veteran slotman Asi Taulava isn’t sulking at all. “Management told us to wait before he can get to stable condition, to be more active. I thinks he’s been doing a lot of tests right now,” said Taulava, three days after Cardona was rushed to the hospital due to pill overdosed. “As a team, they (management) told us to have us going and see how he’s doing, to lift up his spirit,” he added. “We’re all praying for him that he pushes through. It’s tough time for him but you know, we will support him,” said 43-year old Fil-Tongan.

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Expect NLEX to play with extra motivation in support of embattled teammate Macmac Cardona when the Road Warriors take on sister team Meralco in the PBA Governors Cup on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Cardona has been declared out of danger by coach Boyet Fernandez himself, just 2 days after the former La Salle star was rushed to a hospital in Las Pinas due to an apparent suicide attempt. Fernandez said they will play their hearts out and hope every victory will inspire and encourage Cardona as the latter recovers.

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Jose Rizal University head coach Vergel Meneses is convinced his prized guard Tey Teodoro can make it to the PBA. But Meneses’ praise also came with a challenge to the third-year player. “I always tell him, maniwala ka sakin makakapunta ka ng PBA. Most of the coaches in the PBA ay fan niya,” Meneses said after Teodoro’s heroics lifted the Heavy Bombers over the Letran Knights, 75-68, in overtime Tuesday. “But the problem is, kulang sa depensa. The effort is there, but I think he should give more. May puso rin ‘to,” added Meneses, a one-time PBA MVP during his celebrated 15-year career.

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TEYTEY Teodoro is heeding coach Vergel Meneses’ call to play better defense but it will be for Jose Rizal University’s title bid, insisiting he is not yet thinking of a career in professional basketball. Meneses praised Teodoro for his solid offense, saying the JRU guard can become a good PBA player if he can work on his defense.

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Even without an import, San Miguel Beer continued its mastery over Alaska with a 106-103 win in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup Wednesday night at Smart Araneta Coliseum. Arizona Reid was sidelined with an Achilles injury but June Mar Fajardo, the reigning back-to-back MVP, was all the Beermen needed. “It’s a huge, huge game for us because we were playing without an import. The good thing about playing without an import is that every player is challenged,” said SMB head coach Leo Austria.

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SAN Miguel Beer turned to its deep local lineup in the absence of an import as it outlasted Alaska, 106-103, in their PBA Governors’ Cup encounter on Wednesday night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum. SMB dumped the ball to June Mar Fajado, who took advantage of every opportunity as the reigning league MVP poured in 37 points and 14 boards in 36 minutes to put up his highest output since his career-high of 43 coincidentally against Alaska last December in the Philippine Cup.  “The good thing about having no import was that every player was challenged,” SMB coach Leo Austria said. It’s a blessing in disguise. Lumabas talaga ang totoong laro namin.”

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June Mar Fajardo and playmaker Alex Cabagnot stepped up big in the absence of injured import AZ Reid as San Miguel Beer rallied to beat arch rival Alaska, 106-103 in the main game of the PBA Governors Cup on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. “It’s a huge, huge game for us because we’re playing without an import,” said SMB coach Leo Austria, whose team assumed solo second spot at 6-2 with the victory.  “We proved it to them (Aces) that we can win without an import. What more without an import? That’s why we don’t have to rely on anyone but rely on the team,” shared the SMB coach as the Beermen won their sixth straight game against the Aces, dating back to the Philippine Cup Finals this season.

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ARIZONA Reid will not be playing for San Miguel Beer against Alaska tonight, but could be back later in the PBA Governors’ Cup for the Beermen, according to the former Best Import’a agent. Sheryl Reyes sought out the Inquirer through Twitter and explained that her client “wasn’t fired,” as earlier reported, but was, in fact, given a leave by management to allow for a leg injury to heal. Also according to Reyes, San Miguel has asked her to sign up a replacement for Reid plus an Asian import to make up for the prolific Reid’s absence.

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AZ Reid has been given the boot by San Miguel after a tumultuous game where he blasted teammates for poor defense then later claimed he will have to sit out the Beermen’s next matches because of injury, sources said. The decision will leave the Beermen without an import when they play Alaska on Wednesday – a game Reid’s agent said he will sit out anyway because of an injury which SMB coach Leo Austria claimed no knowledge of. Sources said the Beermen are now burning the lines looking for a replacement for Reid, who led the team to last year’s PBA Governors Cup championship but has made a couple of contentious decisions this season.

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Minutes after Beermen head coach Leo Austria gave his post-game interview, Compton headed to the press room to personally look at the stats sheet. A quick look at the stats revealed a huge free throw disparity that got the Alaska coach shaking his head in disappointment. “I like to ask you guys what you thought about the free throw disparity, I’d like your opinion on that,” Compton, in a serious tone, asked the mediamen covering the game.

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TANDUAY Rhum coach Lawrence Chongson thinks his team thrives in do-or-die games. “It’s our instinct to survive,” said Chongson. “We’re holding on to nothing except ourselves.” “No-tomorrow games, that’s where we really rise,” Chongson said of his fourth-ranked Rhum Masters, who survived two knockout games versus No. 1 Racal in the semifinals.

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Tanduay coach Lawrence Chongson, however, isn’t convinced they have the momentum, recalling a finals defeat when he was still coaching University of the East in the UAAP. “Before we get ahead of the story, all we managed was tie up the series,” Chongson, eyeing his first D-League title, said. “Phoenix is a dangerous animal. Ngayon palang namin sila tinalo ngayong season na ito pero I’ll take it. Nai-tabla namin and I would want nothing less than to win again in Game 3. “I’ve been to so many wars, it reminded me of the 2009 UAAP finals wherein we lost Game 1. Nanalo kami ng 20 points in Game 2, but then in Game 3, we lost it also,” Chongson said. “Sana wag mag-dejavu 7 years after. Sana iba naman maging resulta.”

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IN the absence of a few key players, Gilas 5.0 struggled to put away Far Eastern University, 84-77, in a tune-up game at the Meralco Gym on Wednesday. Jonathan Grey scored 21 points to lead the Gilas cadets, who had the weather a late FEU rally in the absence of Mike Tolomia, Mac Belo, Kevin Ferrer, Russel Escoto, Ed Daquioag, and Yutien Andrada. Jaymar Perez and Almond Vosotros added 14 and 13, respectively, for the side that is deep in preparation for the Fiba Asia Challenge Cup in Iran next month.

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SAN Beda coach Jamike Jarin considered injured Donald Tankoua a big loss but refused to use it as an excuse for their loss to San Sebastian. Although he admitted Tankoua’s absence is a big loss for the Red Lions, Jarin said life goes on for San Beda and felt his team still has a great chance of getting the job done without the Cameroonian big man who tore his ACL on his right knee in their previous match against Emilio Aguinaldo College. “Of course, the loss of Donald is a big blow for us,” said Jarin. “But we started out flat and when we got our bearings, we got a good lead.”

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RAMON Fernandez didn’t play under the great coach Virgilio ‘Baby’ Dalupan during his colorful playing career except for a single night 27 years ago. “Definitely,” Fernandez shared to SPIN.ph on how unforgettable that night of June 4, 1989 was when he and Jaworski finally buried the hatchet after conniving to execute the game-winner for the Veterans. “Right after Jaworski passed to me the ball in the last three seconds, I dribbled and went baseline, then na-shoot ko against Benjie Paras, so nanalo kami,” added the four-time PBA MVP, recalling the events as if it happened only yesterday.

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Alex Compton has yet to win a PBA championship since handling the Alaska Aces early in the Governors Cup in 2014. In two seasons with the Aces, Compton has gone 0-4 in the Finals, losing in the last two Philippine Cup championship series both to San Miguel, a 4-0 Finals loss to SMB in last season’s Governors Cup, along with a six-game defeat to Rain or Shine in the Commissioner’s Cup championship series this season.

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