The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters proved that last game’s victory was not a fluke as they defeat Talk N’ Text for the second straight time. With all players working in sync and contributing on both ends of the court, ROS have successfully shifted the momentum on their side. God knows what happened in their dugout during halftime of Game 2, but the Painters came out of it more fired up than ever. It carried over to this game, and now they are ahead of the best-of-seven finals series, 2-1.
Wayne Chism had a very efficient night, finishing with 32 points on 80.6 percent true shooting, 15 rebounds, three assists, three steals, and two blocks. Paul Lee chipped in 17 points on 72.3 true shooting and five assists, despite losing a tooth (and damaging three others).
Lee sacrificed his body to draw a charge from Ivan Johnson twice in the third quarter. No foul was called on the first, but he was crazy/brave enough to try it again. He ended up being elbowed hard on the mouth. He went to the dugout all bloodied and everybody thought he was done for the day. Yet time and again, the #AngasNgTondo shrugged off his injury and played through the pain.
Rain or Shine established a huge lead early and never gave TNT a chance to overtake. Their team defense visibly improved in the past two games after being lackluster in the series opener. They communicated with one another better and rotated faster, resulting to several broken plays for TNT whose effective field goal percentage dipped – from 61.3 in the previous match down to 44.4 percent. Jayson Castro and Ranidel de Ocampo, the focal point of TNT’s offense alongside their import, were relatively contained and limited to 43 and 37 eFG% respectively. Talk N’ Text were also forced to turn the ball over 13 times, giving away roughly 12 percent of their scoring possessions.
On offense, ROS moved the ball so well and toyed with the defense of TNT. Trap Paul Lee? Pass to JR Quinahan or Beau Belga for a wide open triple. Double team Chism at the post? Kick out to Jericho Cruz or Jeff Chan. Switch on ball screens? Attack or drain a jumper over a much smaller Castro. With all the extra passes they were making, you’ll never know who’s going to pull the trigger. Lee, Chism, Chan, Chris Tiu, and Gabe Norwood took turns in facilitating and creating opportunities. ROS dished a total of 27 assists or a whopping 81.8 percent of their field goals, while TNT only dished 11 assists or 35.5 percent of their field goals. The Painters were also difficult to stop in transition and had significant advantage in terms of fastbreak points, 17-5.
It helps that Rain or Shine are utilizing and distributing minutes among 14 players, each willing and confident to step up when needed. Talk N’ Text, on the other hand, works with only nine or ten, with the burden falling almost exclusively on the shoulders of their starters.
Have you noticed that the whole ROS team is trying to get into the head of Ivan Johnson (perfectly captured in the photo below), who looks on the verge of losing his cool and exploding any minute?
Featured image courtesy of KC Cruz, GMA News