Mckay lifts Phoenix Past Aces
Phoenix finally had its breakthrough.
Jameel McKay exploded offensively at last, pouring in game-highs of 42 points and 22 rebounds in a monster game to pace Phoenix to a 94-86 victory over Alaska as the Fuel Masters improved their stand in the 2017 Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum last night.
Phoenix improved to 3-4 as its unpredictability continued while Alaska, after starting 4-0, suffered its second straight setback and fell to 4-2, still in the upper half of the standings.
The Fuel Masters slightly controlled the first three quarters but it was in the first part of the fourth that they really created a critical separation over the Aces.
Just ahead by four entering the final 12 minutes, Phoenix uncorked a decisive 12-4 spurt to open the fourth for a double-digit lead, 78-66, after an emphatic slam from McKay with 5:51 remaining.
That proved to be the deciding run as the Fuel Masters never looked back.
Cyrus Baguio scored 12 points while RJ Jazul, who played his former team for the first time since getting traded, added 10 markers for Phoenix.
Cory Jefferson led Alaska with a team-high 31 points, but the Aces missed the services of star Calvin Abueva, who sat out with a busted lip.
In the second game, streaking TNT KaTropa (4-1) and GlobalPort (1-4) are currently gutting it out against each other as of this writing.
Today, the action continues with an explosive double-header.
Unbeaten league-leader San Miguel Beer (4-0) faces a stiff challenge when it heads to a showdown with Rain or Shine (4-2) in the 5:15 p.m. main event at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The Beermen can keep their place at the top by notching their fifth straight win. Otherwise, Meralco (6-1) will retake first place should the Beermen get their immaculate streak snapped by the Elasto Painters.