San Mig Coffee and Meralco, reeling from contrasting losses the last time out, try to get back on track against separate lowly foes Friday and remain in the upper half of the PBA Philippine Cup standings at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Bolts, who blew a 26-point third quarter lead before bowing to Rain or Shine in overtime Wednesday, take the floor against Globalport at 5:15 p.m. before the Mixers tangle with Air21 in the 7:30 p.m. game.
San Mig Coffee trailed by as many as 35 against Talk ‘N Text and lost ugly, 63-92, as its star-powered lineup was shackled no end by the defending champion Tropang Texters’ defense.
At 7-3, the Mixers will keep third spot behind the Texters and the Elasto Painters even with another loss. But San Mig needs a win badly to have a chance for a top two finish at the end of the round.
Air21, meanwhile, will be shooting to also get back on the win column after the Painters snapped their three-game run last Saturday.
The Express are 2-1 since the arrival of Mike Cortez from Barangay Ginebra and a win over the Mixers today would put them in a sixth-place tie with idle Petron Blaze and Alaska.
James Yap and Peter June Simon were silenced by the Texters, but they are expected to carry most of the scoring load for the Mixers, who will be coming off one of the worst losses in the Tim Cone era. San Mig Coffee was held to just 45 points after three quarters, and a repeat of that performance could prove costly against the Express.
Globalport is at 1-9 and a loss would virtually end its first tournament in the league.
Only eight teams will advance past this round, and the Batang Pier’s only chance is to sweep its remaining five assignments.