KaTropa take on slumping Kings

November 07, 2019

TALK ‘N Text is seeking to regain a piece of possession it had held only a couple of weeks ago in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup.

The KaTropa, solo leaders until they were beaten by sister team NLEX last Oct. 25, take on Barangay Ginebra in one of two interesting matches today at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

There’s slight change though since the KaTropa absorbed a 126-113 spanking from the Road Warriors – something that brings some excitement on the coaching staff.

It’s the acquisition of a highly-offensive player in Bobby Ray Parks whom the team will parade today when they meet the Gin Kings in the 7 p.m. main offering.

“Excited to see how we play. Ray (Parks) is going to be good for us,” said TNT coach Bong Ravena. “It’s more about how we play as a team.”

“Very fortunate to get Ray but we gave up a lot in Don and Tony,” added Ravena, referring to Don Trollano and Tony Semerad whom TNT gave away in exchange for the prized Parks from Blackwater in recent trades.

As much as he is happy with the arrival of Parks to the team, Ravena is hoping to see the same intensity he had seen in the KaTropa before, more so since they are up against a Ginebra team that’s needing badly to bounce back from a stinging loss.

“It’s a challenge for both of us; both coming from a loss. We should stay focused and play as a team,” said Ravena. “We have to go back to being the team that hustles our opponents.”

The KaTropa are gunning for their eighth win in nine outings – win that will bring them back to the top of the standings, and at the same time reinforce their bid for twice-to-beat advantage in the 8-team quarterfinal round.

The Gin Kings on the other hand are looking to put behind the ghost of heart-rending 101-77 loss they suffered at the hands of Meralco last Nov. 3.

The Gin Kings are currently running fifth at 5-3 as a result of that loss to the Bolts. However, if they win, they will tie San Miguel Beer, or possibly result into a three-way tie for the third to fifth places will ensue among the Bolts, San Miguel Beer and Ginebra if the Bolts lose in the first game against Columbian Dyip.

“As hard as it is to do, we must put our Meralco game behind us and move forward,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone.

“We can’t afford not to have our total focus on our TNT game. They are just too good. We need to have our A-game ready to go when we meet at the center court,” added Cone.

The Bolts meanwhile go for their fourth straight win and seventh win in eight games in their 4:30 p.m. meeting with the Dyip, who are running seventh on a 4-5 slate.