HERE WE GO AGAIN. It seems like when it comes to PBA playoff time, the two teams that have been mentioned the most are Talk ‘N Text and San Mig Coffee. Suddenly, PBA fans are starting to remember once again what happened in the finals of the last PBA Commissioner’s Cup, where the Tropang Texters miserably finished just behind champions San Mig Coffee. Now they look to get revenge on the Mixers as they try to knock them out in their semi-final matchup in the PBA Governor’s Cup.

FLASHBACK TO FRIDAY

3-POINT ADVANTAGE

Talk 'N Text will live and die by the 3-point shot in this game against San Mig Coffee (PHOTO CREDIT: GOOGLE IMAGES)

Talk ‘N Text will live and die by the 3-point shot in this game against San Mig Coffee (PHOTO CREDIT: NUKI SABIO, SOLARSPORTSDESK.PH)

It was just last June 13, Friday the 13th, when these two teams last faced each other. In this game, Talk ‘N Text came out with the win behind their hot shooting from the 3-point line. As a team they hit 13/25 (52%) 3-pointers, and 9 of those 13 came from their import Paul Harris. San Mig Coffee is not a team that likes to shoot a lot of 3’s like Talk ‘N Text, so look for the Tropang Texters to definitely use this to their advantage once again if they want a win.

Just to give you an idea of how opposite these teams are when it comes to 3-point shooting, here are their 3-point shooting numbers since they last played each other:

TEAM

3PTA 3PTM 3PT%

TNT

62 21 33.9%

SMC

28 6 21.4%

OFFENSIVE REBOUNDS + 2ND-CHANCE POINTS

Expect Talk 'N Text to gang rebound against guys like Marc Pingris in this game (PHOTO CREDIT: PAUL RYAN TAN, PBA IMAGES)

Expect Talk ‘N Text to gang rebound against guys like Marc Pingris in this game (PHOTO CREDIT: PAUL RYAN TAN, PBA IMAGES)

We all know that San Mig Coffee is a great rebounding team, especially with guys like Pingris and Blakely in their frontcourt. This is why I’m sure a lot of us were surprised when they were out rebounded by Talk ‘N Text 55-48 in their last encounter. That being said, the Tropang Texters would do well to repeat this feat if they want to have a better chance of winning over the Mixers.

Also in that last game, Talk ‘N Text scored 18 second-chance points, while San Mig Coffee managed just 6, so expect this also to be an issue that the Mixers will address heading into this game. The Tropang Texters better be prepared for a battle inside as the offensive rebounds look to be a definite key factor to winning this game.

THE X-FACTOR/S

Another difference I’ve noticed between Talk ‘N Text and San Mig Coffee is the point distribution among their players. Talk ‘N Text is a team that plays mostly around scorers Harris, De Ocampo, and Castro. San Mig Coffee on the other hand is the kind of team that goes with the players that have the hot hand in that game.

This is of course not to say that the rest of the Tropang Texters aren’t capable scorers, or that the Mixers have no go-to guy on offense. I just think that this means that either Talk ‘N Text has to get some additional support on offense, or somebody on San Mig Coffee has to have a big scoring night.

I also think that the situation of Talk ‘N Text is the more difficult one to address, and you can see this from the conference averages of some of their players.

PLAYER

Harris Castro De Ocampo Alapag Canaleta Fonacier Williams

PPG

30.6 17.1 16.6 8.1 7.3 7.2 5.8

Compare that to the conference averages of some of the San Mig Coffee players.

PLAYER

Blakely Simon Devance Yap Pingris Barroca Sangalang Maliksi Melton

PPG

21.9 15.1 9.8 9.3 8.8 7.3 6.1 6.0 5.4

If we remove the players that have double-digit scoring averages, it is clear to see that San Mig Coffee is the team that has the better supporting cast for their main guns on offense. In fact their leading local scorer in the past 4 games they’ve played has been a different guy every time.

DATE

PLAYER POINTS

June 17

Melton 16pts

June 16

Pingris 15pts

June 13

Devance 30pts

June 9

Simon 17pts

But it’s a good sign for Talk ‘N Text that there are now signs of scoring life over on their bench, as guys like Fonacier and Canaleta are finally getting their stroke back from the perimeter. Canaleta of course had his breakout game against Barako Bull in the Quarter Finals, where he finished with 25 points, including 6/11 3PT FGs.

The locals of Talk 'N Text need to help out The Blur and RDO on offense (PHOTO CREDIT: PAUL RYAN TAN, PBA IMAGES)

The locals of Talk ‘N Text need to help out The Blur and RDO on offense (PHOTO CREDIT: PAUL RYAN TAN, PBA IMAGES)