MANILA, Philippines – Alaska and Meralco will collide Wednesday in the PBA Commissioner's Cup following their respective wins over the weekend.
Alaska coach Luigi Trillo said one of his major concerns is Meralco's reinforcement Eric Dawson.
Trillo said they tried to get Dawson's services when they were still looking for an import.
"We tried to get him [Dawson]," he said on PBA's website. "I am worried for this game."
Dawson, who used to play for the San Antonio Spurs, poured in 37 points, grabbed 14 boards, and blocked 4 shots during their 99-92 win over Talk 'N Text.
Meralco's cohesion as a team adds to Trillo's worries.
"If there is one team that I think is underrated, it is Meralco. They have, in my mind, a best import candidate. They added athletes in [Vic] Manuel and [Rey] Guevarra and they seem to have better chemistry," he said.
Whatever Alaska lacks, it usually makes up through extra effort.
Against Rain or Shine, the Aces pulled off a miracle when Calvin Abueva tied the game 81-all with 10 seconds left.
Cyrus Baguio went for the killing blow, running away with a buzzer-beating layup to seal an 83-81 finish against the E-Painters.
This is why Meralco coach Ryan Gregorio said they will have to defend well against the Aces.
"Team defense is what we have focused on in our preparations. If we come out with the same effort on defense and match the energy of the Aces, then we are in for a good match," he said.