Norman Black admitted that Meralco’s biggest concern defensively is how to contain San Miguel Beer’s top slotman June Mar Fajardo.
And that’s understandable considering that the two-time league MVP is coming off a monster performance of 37 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks during the Beermen’s 106-103 win against arch rival Alaska Aces last week.
“Our main focus will be on how to slow down June Mar,” said Black, heading to Meralco’s keenly-awaited match on Wednesday against San Miguel at 7:15 p.m. at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
But an additional concern for the one-time PBA Grand Slam coach is Mike Singletary, who will be making his PBA comeback as a substitute for SMB’s injured import AZ Reid.
Singletary arrived last Friday in Manila and has since started practicing with the Beermen.
“Our biggest concern is, we are not quite sure about their import situation and what role Singletary will play in there,” shared Black, whose team will shoot for its sixth win that will assure the Bolts of a playoff spot.
San Miguel coach Leo Austria said Singletary’s familiarity with the PBA will be an advantage.
“I think mas magiging flexible ang role niya sa team because he can play the 3 or 4 position for us,” said Austria.
Singletary, a former Texas Tech product, needs no introduction to Filipino basketball fans, after previously playing for Barako Bull in the 2013 Governors Cup, where he averaged 33.3 points,12.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.7 steals.
The 27-year-old American also played a key role for Mighty Sports, which ruled this year’s William Jones Cup via an eight-game sweep in Taiwan.
It will also marked the first time that Gary David, now with the Beermen, will face Meralco after their much publicized falling out last conference. – By Richard Dy
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