2008 PBL V-GO Cup Game 3

* What a Game 3 of the this PBL title series ….. its really a championship game, if I ever saw one. Hapee looked poised to clinch the championships for the first 37 of the game’s 40 minutes, until “King Solomon” suddenly decided to get hot, draining 2 straigt 3 point shots to bring Harbour to within 1 point. A free throw by T.Y. Tang tied the game, & the game went into overtime.

* In Overtime, it was T.Y. Tang’s turn to get hot from the 3-pt. area, & Hapee simply melted away. Hapee had 2 chances to win the title in Games 2 & 3, but they simply choked when the game was on the line.

* None of the name players played consistently in this series. Solomon Mercado, T.Y. Tang, Edwin Asoro, Reed Juntilla, Mark Borboran & Rico Maierhoffer all had good games, & bad games. However, despite the inconsistencies, I would give more weight to T.Y. Tang & Solomon Mercado’s game in this series, because they delivered where it mattered most: At crunch time.

* T.Y. Tang was never really that productive, but being a member of the UAAP Champion team w/ the DLSU Archers, & now w/ Harbour Center in the PBL shows that this guy has great mental toughness, a very valuable commodity on the next level, the PBA. He deserved that PBL Finals MVP Award, & I think his value will definitely rise after this performance.

* Same thing for Solomon Mercado, awarded the PBL’s Finals Pivotal Player Awardee. And what a comeback: From being the goat in Game 1, he became the hero in Game 3, helping deliver the championship to Harbour Center. He does tend to favor driving to his right too much, but so far, nobody has been able to stop him there despite knowing that weakness. And just superb clutch shooting on his part. On his first conference in the PBL, & he’s already establishing himself as one of the better players in the amateurs right now.

* As for Gabe Norwood, I’ve always been bothered by Gabe’s lack of consistentcy on offense. It worked for awhile for him trying to make his teamates look good on the floor, but the question is, can he really deliver on offense if he is called upon to do so? It didn’t happen in this conference. Like Solomon, this is Gabe’s first PBL conference. But unlike Mercado, it may take longer for Gabe to have that mental toughness to deliver when the game is on the line.

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