San Miguel Alab Pilipinas hit their home floor for the first time in the 10th season of the ASEAN Basketball League as they face the debuting Singapore Slingers on Sunday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex in Laguna, Philippines, 730 PM local time (GMT +8).
The Philippine squad will be riding the momentum of its thrilling 114-110 overtime victory over the Macau Wolf Warriors last November 27 in China. Filipino-Australian Jordan Heading led the way with 27 points and the brilliance of World Import Khalif Wyatt who scored eight of his 24 points in the extra session carried Alab to their first win of the season. The duo of Heading and Wyatt accounted for 12 of the Philippines’ 17 3-pointers. Alab was also able to eclipse the 38-point, 17-rebound effort of Macau’s Julian Boyd.
Nicholas King was equally instrumental with his output of 18 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists while veteran point guard Jason Brickman orchestrated the Alab offense with 12 assists on top of his 14 points.
Alab Pilipinas will need all the firepower they could get when they face the new-look Singapore Slingers.
Fresh from their third runner-up finish in the last four years, the Slingers have retooled their roster heading into the new season. World Import Xavier Alexander remains the focal point of the Singapore team but he is now flanked by two ABL veterans in Marcus Elliott and Anthony McClain.
Elliott is no stranger to the league, having been with the Hong Kong Eastern the past three years. He is a former World Import MVP and ABL champion, leading Hong Kong to the 2016-2017 title. Last season, he put up 22.8 points, 7.6 rebounds, 5.2 assists, and 1.1 steals. He is a star point guard that can take the Slingers to new heights this year.
McClain, meanwhile, last suited up for the Mono Vampire Basketball Club in the franchise’s first year in the league back in 2015. The 7-foot big man established himself as an imposing center with averages of 18.2 points, 13.8 rebounds, and 2.9 blocks.
The Slingers, one of the founding teams of the league, are eager to erase the memories of their heartbreaking finals defeat against the BTN CLS Knights Indonesia last year. With their loaded roster, they are hoping to finally get their first ABL title this season.