The Rundown From Wednesday’s PBA: Kib Montalbo’s Big Game

The Week 6 of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup started with a triple-header slate on Wednesday. If you happened to miss yesterday’s games, here’s a quick rundown to keep you updated.

Photo via PBA Images

Williams-Montalbo backcourt proves too much for NorthPort

The TNT Tropang Giga (9-1) secured the top seed and the twice-to-beat advantage in the playoffs by hacking out a 102-92 win over the undermanned NorthPort Batang Pier (4-4).

Main Takeaways:

  • If you just looked at the box score, you won’t be able to appreciate what Kib Montalbo did on the defensive end of the floor. He did not tally a single steal or block, but he did make life very miserable for NorthPort star Robert Bolick, who managed to put up 12 points and 11 assists, though on just 3-of-16 shooting from the field, including a 1-of-10 shooting from the three-point line. With his hounding defense on Bolick, combined with his offensive contributions of 22 points and 3 assists, Montalbo is showing his potential as a future elite 3-and-D stalwart in the PBA.
  • Mikey Williams may insist that there’s no changing of the guard at TNT, but it’s already obvious that he has the keys to the offense. The rookie combo guard again lit it up from downtown, producing an efficient 5-of-8 clip on his way to a game-high 29 markers. From reverse finishes to step-back jumpers, Williams is steadily establishing himself as one of the most dynamic scorers we have in the league right now.
  • It was a rough night for the Batang Pier in terms of their offense, as they committed 21 turnovers that resulted in 26 points for the Tropang Giga. One positive takeaway from this loss was that Jonathan Grey looked good out there. He was constantly looking for his shots and finished with 10 points and 5 boards in just 12 minutes of play. If he remains healthy this conference, Grey could be a viable option for NorthPort’s second unit.

Ginebra squeaks past Phoenix

The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel (4-5) came back from a huge deficit in the first quarter to beat the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters (4-6), 94-87.

Main Takeaways:

  • Ginebra entered the game ranking dead last in made three-pointers per contest (6.6), but it was their outside shooting that helped them overcome a sluggish opening quarter and a 19-point deficit. Stanley Pringle and LA Tenorio combined for 54 points and 10 triples, but it was the latter who stood out in this win. Yes, Pringle had more points on the board, but Tenorio’s efficiency was on full display. Along with his 23 points, the veteran point guard also dished out five assists and did not commit a single turnover. Even with the arrival of Pringle and the continuous improvement of Scottie Thompson, the 37-year-old Tenorio is still the most reliable player for the Gin Kings.
  • Jason Perkins’ confidence on offense is at an all-time high. Coming off a 28-point outing in the Fuel Masters’ win over Rain or Shine last September 9, Perkins produced 30 markers last night, just one point shy of his career-high in points. Vic Manuel apparently suffered a leg injury that forced him to play only nine minutes, so Perkins had to step up again for Phoenix. Perkins has a very efficient true shooting percentage (TS%) of 54.3% this conference, which is built on his 43.2/43.6/76.9 shooting splits.

Advanced Stats are now available for Philippine basketball! Through Ryan Alba’s ‘Stats by Ryan’, you can now look at team and player advanced stats for the current 2021 PBA Philippine Cup (and the previous three seasons) via the Dribble Media website.

Check out this glossary for a list of the basketball advanced stats terminologies.

You can also contact Ryan via his Twitter handle (@_alba__).


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