The STAR Hotshots (1-3), after yet another loss (their 3rd in a row), now find themselves at the bottom of the team standings. After suffering two disappointing losses after their conference-opening win, the Hotshots were able to turn things around in their last game against the Beermen. Unfortunately, their effort fell short as their rally was a little bit too late. But looking at the bright side, it was already quite an improvement as the effort that was missing the past few games finally showed up. They are hoping to carry this over in their next game against one of the top teams right now, the Alaska Aces (3-1).

It’s good that they have something to carry over as they’ll be facing a team that’s been playing well on both ends of the floor. So far, the Aces¬†are averaging 108 points (1st) while only allowing their opponents 98.8 points per 100 possessions (3rd). It helps that they have one of the most efficient local and import in Jvee Casio and Travis Romeo respectively. Casio ranks 5th among locals in terms of efficiency with a PER of 22.1. His shooting has also been phenomenal so far ranking 2nd in the league in terms of true shooting percentage with 83.8%. With Casio anchoring Alaska’s outside attack, their import, Travis Romeo is the designated man in the middle. He’s been a great fit for the Aces so far averaging a double-double of 25.3 points and 12.8 rebounds. His size and power in the shaded lane gives Alaska a big advantage in this game.

As for STAR, they will once again rely on the energy and hustle of “Mr. Everything”, Marqus Blakely. It’s expected that Blakely will do his best to propel the Hotshots to victory after coming so close in their last game. It will help if Mark Barroca could carry over his solid game against SMB. As for STAR’s big three, I expect Ping to bring the energy, James to hit the shots he should be making, and PJ to make an impact once he’s on the floor. If all pieces will just fall in place in this game, there’s a chance STAR could score an upset against one of the early league-leaders. The big question would be, can they do it in this game?


TIME: 5:15 PM

Featured Image Credit: Mon Rubio and Mandy Mangubat, The Shaded Lane (Edited by: MI.NI Graphics and Design)