Will TNT Explode or Will Ginebra Play Inspired Basketball?
The series' balance is on the line tonight
Pivotal Game 3 and the winner tonight could potentially be the team who will advance to face the Meralco Bolts in the 2017 PBA Governors Cup.
Actually, a win tonight does not give you a guaranteed ticket to the finals but it certainly provides a much-needed confidence boost, momentum, and cushion and both teams know how critical it is to be back against the wall against each other. The 2017 PBA Governors Cup Semi-finals is a best of 5 series and getting ahead at this stage where both teams got one win each will be paramount, but what will it take for both teams to win game 3?
1. Get hot early, win quarter 1 and 3.
In the first two games, the team that starts well ends up being the winner. Coincidentally, both teams scored an identical 31 points in the first quarter in the first two games. Ginebra in the first game and TNT in the second. Setting up the mood of the game from the start of each half turned out to be one of the deciding factors.
2. Get to the century mark
The team that doesn't score over 100 points lost the game in their first two meetings. TNT Scored 94 points in the first game and Ginebra scored 96. A score beyond one hundred maybe one of the keys to the game, especially if you consider our first key which is to get hot early and score more than 30 points in the first half.
3. Important imports but Local needs to be vocal, magic number 21
Justin Brownlee and Glen Rice Jr are certainly the main men for each team that carries the scoring burden and while they have done exceptionally well for their team, Game 1 and 2 had a magic number for both imports that can is against coincidental. Brownlee scored 21 in the first game and Glen Rice did the same for the second and both got the wins. Both imports actually scored more than 21 points in a losing effort so it isn't exactly import scoring that made the difference. As it is a given already that their imports are effective, it is really the locals who need to step up their game.
4. Keeping it steady for Castro
First game: 16 points, 50% FG, 2 Three pointers, 7 Assists, 3 steals, 6 turnovers
Second Game: 20 points, 43% FG, 3 Three pointers, 10 Assists, 1 Steal, 4 Turnovers
The stats above is that of the primary point guard of TNT and he has been steady throughout the series and tonight cannot be any different for the Blur as he needs to continue to produce both in points and an assist to give their team a chance of winning game 3. It would be nice if he can also lower down the number of turnovers.
5. Yo Joe! What happened to Devance in the second game?
Playing 26 minutes, draining 4 three-pointers and producing a total of 19 points that was the production of Joe in the first game. In the second game, he was given more playing time at 29 minutes but his performance disappeared with zero from the arc and only 4 points. We knew that Devance was one of the difference makers of the game and in game 2 he was shut down by the overwhelming defense of TNT. Joe needs to go GI on game three to give his team a chance of winning tonight!
6. Shoot better and you can be assured of the win...not really?
Barangay Ginebra has done better than TNT in both games but it did not necessarily translate into a win, so what was it really? Defense wins the game! While not all the defensive stats are being counted and there are no points in hustle plays, it certainly made the difference for both teams, especially in a high stakes game. The team that turns the ball over in each game lost the game though.
7. Sharing means winning.
First game, 33 assists for Ginebra vs 15 for TNT. Second game, 26 assists for TNT against 20 for Ginebra. Need I say more? The more you share, the more chances of winning. Obviously, both teams would have adjusted their defense by now and all of those expected scorers will be marked down in red underlines so finding an open man would be critical tonight.
8. Benchwarmers needs to be hot
The team with more bench points wins the game. Basketball is a team game and while we have already stressed the importance of sharing, we also want to emphasize the value of the bench. Stats don't lie and benchwarmers should be ready when their number is called to contribute in any way possible.
It is always hard to give a prediction but the wind will be leaning towards the team who will win the first quarter scoring. If Joe Devance shows up tonight then Ginebra would get a big boost and potentially win but if Talk n Text can defend well early then it would be a different story.