Defending champion San Miguel Beer remains a tough nut to crack as it sets out in search of a fourth PBA Philippine Cup championship, given its star-studded roster described by many as the “Golden State Warriors” of the local pro league.
But to some coaches, there are two teams which are capable of giving the Beermen a run for their money in the opening conference which makes its bow this Sunday at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
To coach Norman Black of Meralco, it’s Barangay Ginebra and Magnolia that readily comes to mind when asked which teams could compete well against the Beermen.
“ It’s Ginebra and Magnolia. They both have the size and the guards to match up with San Miguel and that’s import,” Black told sportswriters during the first ever PBA Media Day on Thursday afternoon.
“You have to match up with June Mar (Fajardo) and Standhardinger (Christian) and you’ve got to deal with Ross (Chris), Lassiter (Marcio) and the other guards they have,” added Black.
However, Black was quick to add that the other teams could also pull the rugs from under the Beermen.
“The ball is round and it’s a new season. We’ll see what happens,” said Black, adding his own squad is doing fine and looking good.
Health-wise, his Bolts have no concerns.
“We’re healthy for the first time in four years and so it’s interesting to start the season and how to play the entire season,” he said.
The Beermen gained an added strength with the signing of Terrence Romeo, the former scoring champion who was traded by Talk N’ Text to San Miguel in exchange for two regulars and a future first round pick.
“They are the Warriors of the PBA,” said Daniel Aguila, a basketball expert from Fairview who sees another dominant showing from the Beermen in this 44th season of Asia’s first professional league.