The presence of Bennie Boatwright has allowed June Mar Fajardo to play a key secondary position in San Miguel Beer’s march to the Philippine Basketball Affiliation (PBA) Commissioner’s Cup Finals.
“I do know what my position is inside our group,” Fajardo stated in a brief chat with The Inquirer whereas entertaining autograph seekers throughout the Philippine Sportswriters Affiliation Awards Night time final Monday at Diamond Lodge.
Boatwright introduced a special dimension to an already-deep Beermen lineup, forming a frontline tandem with the seven-time Most Worthwhile Participant (MVP).
San Miguel lastly discovered its opponent for the title sequence in Magnolia, which took care of enterprise on Wednesday by stopping Phoenix’s Cinderella run, 89-79, at Mall of Asia Enviornment.
Coach Chito Victolero and his defensive-minded Hotshots will attempt to clear up the issue of arising with a solution to cease or no less than restrict the dreaded Boatwright-Fajardo duo and the remainder of the Beermen within the sequence which opens on Friday on the identical Pasay Metropolis venue.
“‘Demise 5’ nga hirap na kami, sa ‘Demise 15’ pa? (We already had issues with the ‘Demise 5,’ what extra the ‘Demise 15),” Victolero stated, referring to San Miguel counterpart Jorge Gallent’s proclamation that his lineup is extra than simply Boatwright, Fajardo or any participant.
Nevertheless it’s clear every part begins with the 2 bigs.
Fajardo normally camps out on the put up whereas Boatwright, standing nearly 6-foot-9, thrives on hitting on the surface shot or begins his assault from the highest of the important thing.
Coach Tim Cone and Barangay Ginebra’s fears have been realized within the semifinals as Boatwright and Fajardo inflicted bother on gamers like Christian Standhardinger and Tony Bishop to steer the Beermen to a sweep of their best-of-five sequence.They’re Magnolia’s issues now.
“We’ll attempt to discover methods to beat them. I consider there’s at all times an answer to any downside and we’ll go to our energy which is protection,” Victolero stated.
Fajardo averaged 15.3 factors, 11.0 rebounds, 3.7 blocks, 1.3 assists and 1.0 steals and was named the ultimate Participant of the Week for the convention by the PBA Press Corps.
“We acquired a very good import who can rating quite a bit and we even have a variety of scorers on this group,” stated Fajardo. “My position is to set the tone, and to create one thing as soon as they put the ball in my arms.”Magnolia took management early after taking double-digit leads within the first half of Recreation 4 of their semifinal encounter, however the Gasoline Masters refused to roll over.
They made a number of runs within the second half, together with halfway within the fourth when Sean Manganti caught fireplace to spark a Phoenix rally.