Surprising Energy battle TNT Texters; Gin Kings duel Carnival | Inquirer Sports

Surprising Energy battle TNT Texters; Gin Kings duel Carnival

By: - Reporter / @MusongINQ
/ 03:32 AM February 13, 2015

MANILA, Philippines—Barako Bull tries to sustain its most explosive start in franchise history when it tangles with Talk ‘N Text shooting for a share of the lead in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup eliminations at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

With a franchise best 3-0 start, the Energy collide with the Tropang Texters at 4:15 p.m. looking to keep their tie for top spot with Meralco and defending champion Purefoods.

“The Barako Bull franchise hasn’t tasted this (success) in a long, long time,” coach Koy Banal had said last week.

Coming into the contest fresh from a week’s break, Talk ‘N Talk will be a formidable foe for the Energy with its talented import in Richard Howell.

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Meanwhile, crowd-darling Barangay Ginebra shoots for a second straight win against newcomer KIA Motors and 7-foor-3 import PJ Ramos in the 7 p.m. game.

The Gin Kings opened up with two straight defeats but finally got going by upending sister team San Miguel Beer last week. And if recent form is any gauge, they are installed as the solid picks against the Carnival.

KIA scored an 88-78 decision over the struggling San Miguel two weeks ago but came crashing back to earth last Sunday when Barako Bull dealt it a 95-86 beating in Manny Pacquiao’s return to coaching chores.

Greg Slaughter and Michael Dunigan will be tasked to alternately put the clamps on Ramos, the Puerto Rican who scored 17 points in the fourth quarter and almost helped the Carnival upset the Energy.

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Solomon Alabi has been unorthodox but very effective for Barako Bull.

He will have his hands full against Howell, last season’s Best Import, who helped the Texters finish second to Grand Slam champion San Mig Coffee (now Purefoods).

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Ranidel de Ocampo, Jason Castro and Larry Fonacier, Talk ‘N Text’s contributions to the Gilas Pilipinas program, will be the prime locals for the Texters, whose only loss thus far came at the hands of the streaking Bolts.

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TAGS: Barako Bull Energy, Basketball, PBA, Sports, Talk N Text Tropang Texters

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