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PBA: Kings eye twice-to-beat

Published

By Jonas Terrado

Team Standings W L

Y-NLEX 8 2

Y-Meralco 8 2

X-TNT KaTropa 7 2

X-Ginebra 6 3

X-San Miguel 6 4

Magnolia 5 5

Columbian 4 6

Alaska 4 6

NorthPort 4 6

Rain or Shine 3 7

Phoenix Pulse 2 8

Blackwater 2 8

Y-clinched twice-to-beat advantage

X-clinched quarterfinals berth

Games Friday

(Smart Araneta Coliseum)

4:30 p.m. — Phoenix Pulse vs Blackwater

7 p.m. — Columbian vs Ginebra

Dyip's CJ Perez, left, reaches for the loose ball against Ginebra's Stanley Pringle during the PBA Commissioner's Cup at Smart Araneta Coliseum, July 14, 2019. The Gin Kings shoot for a twice-to-beat advantage while Columbian hopes to gain an inside track at the quarterfinals when they clash in the PBA Governors’ Cup. (MB File Photo / Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Dyip’s CJ Perez, left, reaches for the loose ball against Ginebra’s Stanley Pringle during the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at Smart Araneta Coliseum, July 14, 2019. The Gin Kings shoot for a twice-to-beat advantage while Columbian hopes to gain an inside track at the quarterfinals when they clash in the PBA Governors’ Cup. (MB File Photo / Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Barangay Ginebra San Miguel shoots for a twice-to-beat advantage while Columbian hopes to gain inside track at the quarterfinals when they clash in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Kings and Dyip square off at 7 p.m. as the playoff race continue to intensify with four playdates left in the elimination round of the season-ending conference.

Ginebra is in fourth spot at 6-3 while Columbian is locked in a share of seventh place at 4-6 with NorthPort and Alaska, which won their respective assignments last Wednesday at the Big Dome.

Coach Tim Cone and Ginebra are assured of the quarterfinal bonus with a victory due to its edge over third-running TNT KaTropa (7-2) and fifth-placer San Miguel Beer (6-4).

Ginebra beat San Miguel 129-124 last month and TNT 96-93 exactly a week ago.

Columbian, meanwhile, is out to score a big win in order to enhance its chances of a first quarterfinal appearance since the 2016 Governors’ Cup.

But the Dyip have never beaten the Kings in 14 tries since the franchise made its debut in the 2014-15 season.

Beating Ginebra will allow Columbian to put pressure on NorthPort and Alaska, which are facing fancied opponents in their final elimination round matches.

NorthPort plays Ginebra on Sunday while Alaska battles co-leader NLEX on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Phoenix Pulse and Blackwater meet in a non-bearing match at 4:30 p.m.

Only pride is at stake for both 2-8 teams as the loser will end up with the league’s worst record in the tournament.

Phoenix was officially eliminated from contention after a 105-102 loss to Alaska last two days earlier.

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