The Meralco Bolts and the NLEX Road Warriors have been pleasant surprises in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup as they currently hold the top two records in the standings.
Both of the said teams have won eight games already, and they are primed to go very deep into the playoffs with the way that they are playing.
After having a lackluster outing in the same tournament just last year, they have hit their stride as their locals and imports have meshed well to produce on both ends of the floor, making them a handful to deal with.
Allow FOX Sports Philippines to take a quick look as to what’s working so far between these two teams.
High-octane offense fueling their success
It’s no secret that these two teams have found success in this ongoing tournament, as their offense has been clicking for the most part. Meralco (104.9) and NLEX (110.0) are currently fourth and second overall in total points per game.
Raymond Almazan has been a revelation for the Bolts since they acquired him last May. He is their double-double threat on a nightly basis with averages of 14.2 points and 11.4 rebounds per contest.
On the other hand, Kiefer Ravena continues to carry the Road Warriors’ cudgels on offense by posting norms of 15.4 points and 8.9 assists per game.
Getting the job done on the boards
MVP-bankrolled teams are usually undersized compared to their counterparts, which is why it’s great to see them being some of the leading rebounding teams in the Association. The Bolts are currently second in that regard with 49.2 rebounds per game, while NLEX isn’t far behind with a healthy average of 45.3 rebounds per game.
It’s their imports who are leading the way in gaining possession for their clubs. Allen Durham is the Bolts’ top rebounder with 14.5 per game, while Manny Harris contributes 8.0 per game for the Road Warriors.
Their do-it-all imports doing a lot of damage
Getting strong imports has always been the difference between winning and losing in the Governors’ Cup, and this one is no exception.
With a strong field of reinforcements this time around, Meralco and NLEX made sure to get theirs as well by tapping the services of Allen Durham and Manny Harris.
Durham has been the Bolts’ old reliable, as his versatile skillset makes him the focal point of their offense. The 31-year-old Swiss army knife is posting norms of 30.3 points, 14.5 rebounds, and 6.5 assists per game.
Meanwhile, Manny Harris was brought in to replace Olu Ashaolu to beef up their scoring. And the former Cleveland Cavaliers guard performed beyond expectations by flaunting his superb shotmaking ability and activity on the defensive end. Harris tallies averages of 34.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 8.5 assists, and 3.3 steals per contest.
(Images from PBA)