Here are the live scores, updates, and results of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup between the Meralco Bolts and the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, scheduled on July 24, 2021, at 2:00 PM.
Rain or Shine and Meralco will battle for the early lead when these two still unbeaten teams collide later this afternoon at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City.
The Elasto Painters and the Bolts, along with the Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok, are now tied for first place with 2-0 cards each. But Rain or Shine or Meralco will have an opportunity to take the lead.
The Painters have won their first two games by outworking their opponents, which allowed them to win an exciting 83-82 game against the NLEX Road Warriors on opening day last Friday, July 16, and a 71-62 game against the Blackwater Bossing two days later.
In their last game, Rain or Shine was able to withstand a last-ditch rally by the Blackwater Bossing.
In a relatively low-scoring affair, Rey Nambatac led the way for Rain or Shine with 21 points on top of 12 rebounds. Javee Mocon finished with a double-double of 12 points and 12 rebounds, while Norbert Torres had 13 points.
Nambatac has been averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds for Rain or Shine, earning him the PBA Press Corps Player of the Week award for the first time this season.
When it comes to facing the Bolts, ROS head coach Chris Gavina has a lot of options, including young players like Mocon and Torres, as well as veterans like Beau Belga and Gabe Norwood.
On the other hand, Meralco is also aiming for a 3-0 win-loss record following today’s contests.
Meralco, which defeated NorthPort 85-63 on opening day before defeating San Miguel Beer 93-87 last Sunday, had a strong performance from new recruit Mac Belo, who was acquired in an off-season trade with Blackwater.
Former Rookie of the Year Chris Newsome, ‘bubble’ tournament top rookie Aaron Black, Allein Maliksi, Raymond Almazan, Cliff Hodge, rookie Alvin Pasaol, and veteran Reynel Hugnatan are among Belo’s supporting cast.
Meralco ruined six-time MVP June Mar Fajardo’s much-anticipated PBA comeback earlier this week with a gutsy win against San Miguel.
The Bolts beat the star-studded Beermen for their second straight win in as many games to start the conference. Newsome scored 17 points and sank a crucial three-pointer down the stretch.
Black churned out 14 points and 4 rebounds off the bench for the Bolts, Hugnatan had 13 points and 3 rebounds, while John Pinto added 11 points.
The last time these two teams faced in the PBA bubble, energized Meralco fends off a Rain or Shine late scare. Meralco’s 3rd quarter surge lifts the Bolts past the Elasto Painters
The All-Filipino Cup will proceed to the quarterfinals in its customary format, with the top eight teams advancing. Against the eighth and seventh seeds, the top two seeds will have a twice-to-beat advantage. Meanwhile, in a best-of-three series, No. 3 will face No. 6, and No. 4 will face No. 5. Best-of-seven matches will be played in the semifinals and finals.
Unlike last season’s setup, the league will have a closed-circuit system for the Philippine Cup this time, with teams, league employees, and the media encouraged to keep a venue-home pattern to limit COVID-19 exposure.
The games will be held four times a week. The conference is also scheduled to go through the end of October.