Talk ‘N Text escapes Rain or Shine but loses import Howell
MANILA, Philippines — Talk ‘N Text survived the absence of its import in the second half to beat Rain or Shine, 85-82, and keep its record perfect in the 2014 PBA Commissioner’s Cup Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Richard Howell had to be brought to the hospital before the third quarter started to have his right shoulder, which he hurt after a hard fall late in the second quarter, checked and did not return.
“I’m very glad we were able to survive this game – a very physical game, a vey rugged game. We showed a lot of guts to get this win,” TNT head coach Norman Black told reporters. “I’m not too sure about my import. He went to the hospital to get an MRI on his shoulder because he hit the ground pretty hard on that fall so we just have to wait what happens with that.”
“But I’m happy with the local players they came out strong in the second half, they played hard, didn’t give up and didn’t buckle under pressure,” Black added.
KG Canaleta led the Tropang Texters, who remained untouched after eight games, with 19 points to go along with eight rebounds while Kelly Williams had 13 points and seven boards.
The hardworking Howell finished with two points and nine rebounds in 16 minutes.
The Texters blew a 13-point lead they built in the first half as the Elasto Painters, who were without their fiery head coach Yeng Guiao, took a one-point lead by halftime.
But Talk ‘N Text took another double-digit advantage, 75-59, early in the fourth quarter despite the loss of Howell before ROS cut it to two, 84-82, with 1:01 remaining on a clutch 3-pointer by Paul Lee.
Wayne Chism paced the Painters, who slipped to 3-4, with 18 points and 10 rebounds but had several instances where he couldn’t secure the possession late that would’ve given his team a chance to win.
Jimmy Alapag, one of the best free throw shooters in the league, uncharacteristically muffed two freebies in the final 10.1 ticks left that would’ve made it a four-point TNT lead but the ball went back to the Texters after Chism lost the ball out of bounds while going for the rebound.
Larry Fonacier made it a three-point edge before ROS big man Beau Belga missed a 3-pointer as time ran out.
Guiao missed the game due to a business trip in Europe.