The Aces are running on a 4-game winning streak with victories against the Beermen, the Texters and the reigning Grand Slam champs, the Hotshots (still weird).
Although the past two conferences for the Aces have been a time where they were more offensively oriented, they’ve returned to their roots as the one of the top defensive teams in the league. The most impressive thing is their ability to force tons of misses from midrange. They allow just allow opponents to shoot just 25.2 percent from long twos (18+ feet) and rank 6th highest in most number of opponent attempts there. The pack the paint mentality is working (although they also rank among the highest opponent attempts from deep).
The last game saw Alaska come through again in the clutch when JVee casio made a step through jumper to go ahead. A few clutch defensive plays later (headed of course by Dondon and Calvin Abueva) and the Aces pretty much had the game in the bag there after. Although their next opponent won’t be as difficult — because their coach is, you know, busy preparing for a game in another sport — it shouldn’t make the Aces complacent.
The most important thing to know here is this: Kia is one of the worst 3-point shooting teams in the league allowing 10th highest attempts in the league and the 11th worst percentage. Which is great for the Aces because they are one of the best 3-point shooting teams in the league.
I’d be an idiot not to predict a win especially after predicting a win against the Beermen. But I’m wary of too obvious things. One of the few things I’ve learned from devouring the Game of Thrones books recently: things that are painfully in your favor are actually not in your favor. That, and that book Tyrion is as awesome as TV Tyrion.
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TIME: 4:15 PM
ARENA: CUNETA ASTRODOME
Featured Image Credit: Paolo Papa, Sports5