Talk ‘N Text can finally put its import woes behind them as the return of Paul Harris (TNT’s former import in 2011) has finally given them a steadying presence on the floor. In their last game against GlobalPort, Harris had 37 points, 14 rebounds and 4 assists. He was 6 of 8 from 3-point area, and shot a scorching 56 percent from the field. But aside from relying on the stellar play of Harris, let’s take a look and see what else the Tropang Texters can do to continue their winning ways, especially against a Barako Bull team with a lot of momentum on their side.

Comparing both games vs GBP

In order to figure out what Talk ‘N Text has to do to have a better chance of beating Barako Bull, let’s take a look at the last games played by both teams (both against GlobalPort). As we know, both Talk ‘N Text and Barako Bull ended up beating GlobalPort in their respective games, but they did it in very different fashions.

Bullish Offense

Barako Bull put up a 24-point massacre against GlobalPort in their previous game, outscoring them 122-98. That’s practically 30 points per quarter, and almost every player that was sent into the game scored at least two points (Willy Wilson was the only player who did not score for Barako Bull). In addition, they put up those points on 13 of 24 shooting from 3 (54.2 percent), 35 of 61 shooting from 2 (57.4 percent), and 13 of 17 shooting from the line (76.5 percent). That amounts to a true shooting percentage of 65.8 percent. Needless to say, these offensive numbers were well above the conference averages of Barako Bull.

Barako Bull

2PT FG% 3PT FG% Total FG% FT% eFG% TS%

vs GlobalPort

57.4% 54.2% 56.5% 76.5% 64.1% 65.8%

Conference Averages

43.8% 35.4% 41.4% 71.8% 46.4% 49.7%

So what was it then that caused this sudden outburst of offensive power from this team? ANSWER: new import Allen Durham.

Lowhorn tried desperately to stop the onslaught of Durham inside, but to no avail. (PHOTO CREDIT: PBA IMAGES)

Lowhorn tried desperately to stop the onslaught of Durham inside, but to no avail. (Photo Credit: PBA)

Durham, a veteran of the Euro League, filled up the stat sheet for Barako Bull with 32 points, 24 rebounds, 10 assists, and 3 blocked shots. His 32 points were also on an efficient 12 of 21 shooting (57.1 percent) and 10 of his 24 rebounds were on the offensive glass. Oh and did I already mention the 10 assists? Then maybe I should also mention that Durham only had 1 turnover and 1 foul for the entire game. That’s definitely a triple-double and then some, to say the least. It was clear to see that his inside presence had a positive effect on the rest of the team, as Barako Bull was able to play more comfortably on both ends of the floor. He’s a man on a mission, and the mission has definitely caught on among his teammates: play winning basketball. Without a doubt the arrival of Durham has given hope to this Barako Bull squad, and this does not bode well for Talk ‘N Text, as they are sure to be in for a tough battle in their matchup.

Tropang Defense

It’s important to note however that despite the offensive improvement of Barako Bull with Durham, their defense still remained pretty much…average. To give just a few examples, they still allowed GlobalPort to make 26 of their 52 attempts from 2-point range (50 percent), forced only 9 turnovers (when they themselves had 12), gave up 21 assisted field goals and 13 offensive rebounds that led to 13 second-chance points against them.

On the other hand, Talk ‘N Text is usually a team that boasts one of the best defenses in the league, but in this conference their defensive numbers haven’t been as good as usual. These are the stats for the opponents of Talk ‘N Text in their 6 games so far.

TNT opponents

2PT FG% 3PT FG% Total FG% FT% eFG% TS%

Conference Averages

49.2% 26.5% 42.1% 68.2% 46.3% 50%

Besides defending the 3-point line, Talk ‘N Text is having a relatively difficult time defending elsewhere on the court. But let’s take into account the fact that they went only one game with Jeffers, one game without an import, and 3 games with an import who frankly, wasn’t very good on defense (or on offense for that matter). That being said, I’d like to consider their defense only for the last game against GlobalPort, because that is most likely the defense they will be having for the remainder of the conference (assuming Paul Harris stays on til then).


2PT FG% 3PT FG% Total FG% FT% eFG% TS%


47.6% 0% 39.5% 78.6% 39.5% 46.3%

If we compare the numbers, there is an obvious improvement in the defense of Talk ‘N Text, and this is what we should come to expect in the game against Barako Bull. In other words, if Talk ‘N Text wants to win this game, they’ll have to step it up on defense more so than on offense.


Before I say anything further, I’ll give you a heads up already that this final section of my article isn’t going to contain any statistical analysis, but I think I do have an observation worth mentioning. Talk ‘N Text is one of those teams that has the luxury of having locals on their roster that can effectively guard opposing imports. In fact they use this to its fullest advantage in every game and you can expect them to do so once more against Allen Durham and Barako Bull. As we saw in Talk ‘N Text’s previous encounter with GlobalPort, they were able to stop the rampage of Dior Lowhorn with their ball denial and organized team defense, and he was limited well below his previous monster averages. I believe that Talk ‘N Text will be able to do the same with Durham and if that’s the case, the Barako Bull offense will likewise be contained.