‘B-Meg has a chance if it can slow down TNT’By Musong R. Castillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
TIM Cone knows what he’s about to face.
“In order to be the best, you have to beat the best,” Cone said yesterday as he gears up his B-Meg Llamados for their best-of-seven title playoffs opposite defending PBA Commissioner’s Cup champion Talk ‘N Text starting Monday.
“First, we have to believe that we can beat them. (And) if we can slow them down, I think we have a chance,” Cone explained even as Chot Reyes, his counterpart at Talk ‘N Text, refuses to buy the notion that the “Triangle Offense” will be his main headache against B-Meg.
“Everyone talks about the triangle offense of Tim,” Reyes said. “But his calling card really is all about defense, how he prepares his players to play a defensive game.”
The Llamados will come into the series as the No. 1 team defensively after giving up an average of only 87.06 points through the eliminations, three games against Meralco in the quarterfinals and four against Barangay Ginebra in the Final Four.
Talk ‘N Text, meanwhile, will go into the series as the second best offensive team with an average of 100.43 points, and the Tropang Texters own a victory over B-Meg in their only meeting thus far in the tournament, a game which they played without an import.
But Reyes believes that none of those stats matter now.
“B-Meg has the depth advantage” Reyes said. “They are also fresher as we’re playing our fifth Finals in a row.
“They have the advantage in size and we have the advantage in speed. As always, the series will be won by the team that imposes its game and makes quick adjustments.”
Meanwhile, the Office of the Commissioner has approved the amended trade between Petron Blaze and Powerade involving super rookie Marcio Lassiter yesterday.
Lassiter and guard Celino Cruz will move to Petron, which gave up Rabeh Al-Hussaini, Rey Guevarra and the veteran Lordy Tugade.