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Saturday, August 24, 2019
CEBU

Mendoza: Jones SMB’s dengue?

All Write

MY “TWIN Terrors” spin came out true on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Didn’t I say that San Miguel Beer had to contend with Terrence Jones big time?

TNT-KaTropa’s prolific import was unstoppable as usual, firing 41 points in leading KaTropa to a crushing 109-96 victory over SMB in Game One of their PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals.

My second “terror” was the fatigue factor, right?

It became evident when, late in the first quarter, KaTropa employed a dizzying run-and-gun attack, virtually throwing the dog-tired Beermen in disarray.

TNT came prepared.

Even before the first whistle was blown to open the best-of-seven series, SMB had already been reeling from knee-crumbling exhaustion triggered mainly by the Beermen’s tortuous rally from almost rock-bottom to get to the Finals.

Look, didn’t the Beermen have practically only a day’s rest before they faced KaTropa?

Lame like battle-weary soldiers, the Beermen were virtually led to the slaughterhouse, mercilessly butchered by a bunch brutalized themselves by a title drought.

The gory outcome? The Beermen had been pitifully transformed from hopeful heroes to hapless horrific zombies.

Suddenly, we ask: Were they really our champs just one conference ago, when they virtually dusted off their foes in enviable style to pocket a record fifth straight Philippine Cup?

But as I keep saying, an import-flavored series will drastically change everything, mainly because of American reinforcements always ready to alter the landscape.

And so, it’s been proven that TNT did its scouting chores well enough and was rewarded with a 24-carat find in Jones. Its elimination-leading 10-1 record told it all.

Coach Leo Austria tried his best in Game One in searching for the antidote to the Jones venom. Unfortunately, he failed—miserably.

Absolutely, Jones is SMB’s dengue by now.

Maybe a double-team on Jones could cure the disease?

Or, isn’t prevention always better than the cure? Will a total ball denial on Jones be an opulent option?

I can’t wait for Wednesday’s Game Two to blast off.


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