MANILA, Philippines -- The TNT Tropang GIGA will have an advantage in rest and preparation when they step into the finals of the 2022 PBA Philippine Cup.
The Tropang GIGA wrapped up their semifinals series against the Magnolia Hotshots in six games, with Jayson Castro leading the way in their 87-74 triumph in Game 6. The other semis series between San Miguel and Meralco, meanwhile, is heading to a seventh game.
The PBA has yet to release a schedule for the best-of-seven finals, but the Tropang GIGA will certainly have at least a couple of days more rest than their opponent.
"It's very big for us," TNT coach Chot Reyes said of the break that they are getting.
"We got a lot of players who are banged up, so that extra break is really going to come in really, really handy, not only to rest but also to prepare, to really watch," he added.
Reyes will be an interested spectator when Meralco and San Miguel face off on Wednesday for Game 7 at the Araneta Coliseum.
"I haven't really taken a look at the other series. I've caught glimpses here and there, but now at least we can take a look," he said.
Meralco forced a Game 7 after erasing a 10-point deficit in the final four-and-a-half minutes of their showdown against San Miguel on Sunday night. Aaron Black took charge in the end game, scoring his team's last 11 points to carry them to a 96-92 win.
For Reyes, San Miguel and Meralco present different problems which will test their versatility.
"We all know the problem San Miguel presents with June Mar [Fajardo], with their size, and their overall talent," he said. "And then Meralco presents a different kind of problem with their scrappiness and the way they play defense, and they have great size in the wing position."
"Meralco doesn't post their bigs up, they post their wingmen up. That's a completely different approach, completely different problem for us," he added. "We like to play small, so it presents a different problem for us. Magkaiba eh."
"Maski sino 'yun, we're really going to be tested," Reyes stressed.
Reyes and TNT are seeking a second straight All-Filipino crown, having beaten Magnolia in five games during the 2021 edition of the conference.