06 April 2016

Bolts Still Not Assured of Top Two Slots

Meralco Bolts
At 7 wins and 2 losses, Meralco Bolts was a surprised tournament leader in the on-going Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner's Cup. With two games left, are the Bolts assured of the top two spots? Nope. Not yet anyway.

The hard-eared win against Mahindra Enforcers last 3 April shows that the Bolts had a lot of work to do to get back to their winning form. However, the win still assured them of at least a tie for a top two finish in the elimination, thanks to the Barangay Ginebra win against sister team San Miguel Beermen.

The Beermen tied at second place with the Alaska Aces (6-3) and now need to sweep their two remaining games against Tropang TNT and Phoenix to boost their bid for a top two slot.

The Texters and the Road Warriors are also assured of playoff berths. The Rain or Shine has just assured itself of a quarterfinals slot after beating GlobalPort Batang Pier, while the Enforcers remained in contention for the eighth and last qualifying spot at 4-5.

Mahindra actually has two chances to still advance but the Enforcers will be facing tough squads in the Texters and the Star Hotshots, now running ninth at 4-6 after successive losses to San Miguel and Alaska.

If Mahindra loses to TNT on 9 April, it’s date with the Star four days later becomes a knockout duel for the last quarterfinal slot.

The Meralco-Alaska duel this coming 8 April is expected to decide who gets one of the two top berths that will earn a twice-to-beat bonus in the quarterfinals against the No. 7 and No. 8 qualifiers. It will be No. 3 against No. 6 and No. 4 against No. 5 for the next four survivors in separate best-of-three series to decide the two other semifinalists.

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