Alaska Aces battle TNT Tropang Texters

THE 2015 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup will continue to roll as two more heavyweights make their debut while two upstarts are looking to begin a new campaign on a high note.

Considered as two of the title contenders, the intact Alaska Aces and the upgraded Talk ‘ N Text Tropang Texters want to start on the right foot as they make their tournament debut at 7 p.m. in the main event at the Smart Araneta Coliseum tonight.

Star Hotshots guard James Yap (18) drives strong to the hoop against Rain or Shine Elasto Painters defender Raymond Almazan (right). The Elasto Painters frustrated the Hotshots, 96-87, to kick off hostilities of PBA Season 41 before a sparse crowd at the Mall of Asia Arena.

In the first game, two teams who are looking to see some significant progress start their new journey against each other as retooled NLEX dukes it out against Blackwater at 4:15 p.m.

The two squads which notch victories will join Rain or Shine (1-0), who topped Star in the season’s opening game the other night, in the early leader board.

Aside from the eagerly anticipated clash between the Tropang Texters and the Aces given there loaded line-ups, the debut of promising top draft picks Moala Tautuaa (No. 1) and Troy Rosario (No. 2) are something that people will surely keep an eye on once the ball gets rolling.

Not contented with its already deep and talented roster and with winning the Commissioner’s Cup last season, Talk ‘N Text made aggressive moves to boltster its already strong team with the acquisitions of those two incoming talented rookies as well as the addition of versatile swingman Dylan Ababou.

Smart Gilas mainstays Jayson Castro, Ranidel De Ocampo and Matt Ganuelas-Rosser along with old reliables Larry Fonacier, Harvey Carey and Kelly Williams will continue to spearhead the Texters’ attack.

A finalist last year in this All-Filipino tournament as well as the Governors’ Cup, the Aces kept their contending line-up intact for another run at a championship and they are hoping that they can finally finish the job completely this season.

With more maturity and a National team stint under his belt, Alaska star Calvin Abueva will be counted on to once again lead his team along with usual suspects Jvee Casio, Cyrus Baguio, Vic Manuel, Sonny Thoss and Chris Banchero.

Testing each other early may very well be a good power indicator for both Talk ‘N Text and Alaska.

As for the Elite and the Road Warriors, they both want to have positive starts as these squads obviously want to move up the echelon this season.

NLEX did some nice off-season moves as it was able to enhance its core with the additions of workhorse Sean Anthony, talented sophomore Kevin Alas, rookies Garvo Lanete, Glenn Khobuntin and Simon Enciso and big man Rob Reyes.

These new Road Warriors will join forces with NLEX regulars Asi Taulava, Mark Cardona and Jonas Villanueva.

Following its forgettable debut season in the league last season, Blackwater also made it a point to shore up its line-up by adding veterans Mike Cortez and James Sena, rising youngster Carlo Lastimosa and rookies Almond Vosotros and Keith Agovida to team-up with Bam Gamalinda, Raphy Reyes, JP Erram, Reil Cervantes and Gilbert Bulawan in hopes of a better run ahead.

Games Friday

(Smart Araneta Coliseum)

4:15 p.m. • Blackwater vs. NLEX

7 p.m. • Talk ‘N Text vs. Alaska

Topics: PBA 2015 cup , alaska aces , tnt tropang texters

Related stories:

No related stories matched this topic.

COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.