- The Red Lions beat the Atlas 101-77 and 92-61, on route to a championship. In both encounters, "Superman" Sudan Daniel exploded for triple-doubles of points, rebounds and blocks.
- San Beda got nearly double the amount of trips to the line (40.5 to 20.5) and shut down the interior to the tune of 17.5 blocks to just 3.5 for Perpetual Help.
The Red Lions begin their title defense against a team that lacks height, making this a great game to ease Dave Marcelo and the rest of the San Beda big men into their new roles, without an intimidating shot blocker behind them.
Stat to watch: Assists; ball movement and fast break opportunities allowed the Lions to pile on the points last season. Blue chip rookie Baser Amer might be a whole lot more comfortable in the open court too.
Player to watch: Dave Marcelo; after splitting minutes (averaged only 17.71 the entire season) last year with Sudan Daniel, expect this guy to be San Beda's main man in the middle. Give him around 26 minutes a game and he can easily average a double-double with 2 blocks a game. The question is, will Coach Lim play him that long, or have him share time with, say, Jake Pascual?
Arnold Danganan graduates, the board shuts down Paul Nuilan, coach Boris Aldeguer resigns, and then the team opts not to field Marlon Gomez. Clearly it's been a tough two weeks for the Atlas, and things won't get any better when they go up against the defending champs. Will they have adjusted to playing without their two big men? Or how about adjusting to new head coach Jimwell Gican, who was elevated after Aldeguer's exit?
Stat to watch: Free throw attempts; Without Daniel under the basket ready to spike any shots that get thrown up, teams might feel more encouraged when they drive down the middle. The Atlas might pull off an upset if they can stick close with the number of Red Lion charities being whistled.
Player to watch: Jett Vidal; In their first encounter against the Red Lions, Vidal exploded for 21 points, all coming from beyond the arc. Clearly he's not afraid to take shots, but the question will be if he can convert at a decent percentage instead of just chucking them up (which might lead to long rebounds and San Beda fast breaks)
Prediction: San Beda Red Lions