NorthPort has a chance to automatically enter the quarterfinals of the PBA Philippine Cup.
Standing in the way is Barangay Ginebra.
The Gin Kings, who are already assured of the top 3 seeding in the playoffs, will try to play spoiler against the Batang Pier on Wednesday night at the Araneta Coliseum at 7 p.m.
If NorthPort (4-6) loses, it will be forced into a logjam at eighth place and will need to fight it out with other teams for a berth in the quarterfinals.
To avoid such complication, the Batang Pier will need to get past the Gin Kings.
"Needless to say, we'll do our best to make it to the quarterfinals without the need to go through a knockout game," said NorthPort coach Pido Jarencio in PBA.ph.
In the 4 p.m. skirmish, Magnolia and NLEX will battle it out for the number 6 slot that would mean a best-of-3 duel with Barangay Ginebra in the quarterfinals.
A defeat will drop Magnolia to seventh and a twice-to-win handicap against second-ranked Rain or Shine in the next round.
For NLEX, it needs to beat Magnolia by at least 9 points for a superior quotient in case it gets into a three-way tie at 5-6 with Magnolia and NorthPort.
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