Magnolia import Justin Jackson sees an explosive collision when his team faces Barangay Ginebra San Miguel tonight, while Alaska aims to sustain its winning run in Season 43 Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup at the Araneta Coliseum.
Fresh from halting a three-game slide with a 111-89 win over TNT KaTropa last Wednesday, the Hotshots eye a fifth win, as they take on the Gin Kings in the second game titled “Manila Clasico” at 6:45 p.m. The Aces, on the other hand, face Meralco in the 4:30 p.m. opener.
“Justin Brownlee team right? That’s my guy,” said Jackson, referring to the popular Ginebra import that led his team to back-to-back Governors’ Cup titles. “We are going to be ready. We are coming to practice and be ready, and we’ll be ready for a war and that is going to be.”
“It’s going to be a war and we have a great group of guys that’s going to fight. I can’t let Magnolia down, I can’t do it. They have been good to me. I gave a promise and I kept it,” added Jackson.
The Hotshots will be playing without big men Ian Sangalang and Jean Marc Pingris who were both sidelined by injuries.
“In two weeks, we have five games so this will be our fourth. It’s a clasico always. The fans, the players and the coaches are all excited. But it is always a good game,” said Magnolia coach Chito Victolero.
Ginebra, with a 2-5 win-loss record, is bent on scoring a win to keep its hope for a playoff berth alive.
“It is the Manila Clasico and both teams need a win big time, so it will be exciting. They are coming off a huge must-win against TNT and are confident. For us, this game could decide our playoff life. We need to be ready,” said grand slam coach Tim Cone.
Meanwhile, Alaska coach Alex Compton told his wards to be extremely cautious against the Bolts.
“That’s really hard and coach Norman Black has been doing a great job of coaching them,” said Compton. “If I have some of that tricky freak defense, this will be the game to use it, only we don’t have a tricky freak defense that we practiced. So we have to work and fight.”
“I don’t think there’s a player or even an import that can stop Arinze (Onuaku) one-on-one. You have to play as hard as you can,” added Compton.
The Aces (7-1) are coming from a 120-111 win over Northern Luzon Expressway last Friday.
Meralco is already assured of a quarterfinal berth. The Bolts routed the already-eliminated Blackwater 102-75 also last Friday, extending their winning streak to three and improving their win-loss record to 6-2.
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