Earl Clark scored 40 points and Don Trollano added 16, and NLEX erased an 18-point deficit to beat Meralco 92-81 in the PBA Commissioner's Cup at PhilSports Arena in Pasig on Wednesday.
The Road Warriors upped their record to 5-7 while Meralco, now a half-game behind NLEX at ninth place, dropped to 4-7, as the race to book a quarterfinals berth tightens.
Paul Varilla, NLEX's unsung hero who played big in the fourth-quarter comeback, helped put the Road Warriors ahead 80-77 after a 3-point play.
That play was part of an 11-0 run that widened the gap to 88-77 with less than two minutes left in the game.
After scoring 57 points in the first half, Meralco was limited to 14 and 10 points in the third and fourth quarters, respectively.
"Before the game sinasabi ko sa kanila na I just want to think about this game and not the things that will happen tomorrow," NLEX coach Frankie Lim said.
"Just win this game first and we'll see what's gonna happen ... Bahala sila sa game nila. Basta kami tapos na ... Mag-aantay kami."
Don Trollano added 16 points for NLEX, which fell behind 57-39 at the half.
KJ McDaniels tallied 22 points on an off 11-of-33 shooting from the field to lead Meralco.