PBA: Joshua Smith hits game winner for TNT, draws first blood against San Miguel Beermen

Image by PBA PH

Limping and hurt, Joshua Smith comes up big for TNT in Game 1 of the PBA Commissioners Finals.

Smith, despite hobbling most of the entire second half of their match-up against San Miguel Beer, hit the game-winning shot with just over a second left with the score tied at  102.

Smith connected on his hook shot off a broken play, which was designed for Jayson Castro.

“It was for Jayson. He wasn’t open. I caught the ball, I was looking for somebody to pass it to. Once there was nobody else I just decided to do it myself,” said Smith, who has been playing through a foot injury since the semifinals and had been on day-to-day status up until Game 1.

Smith put-up 21 points off the bench with 9 rebounds and 2 assists.

TNT coach Nash Racela was all praises for Smith and RR Pogoy, who also have a career night by putting up team-high 27 points.

“It’s good that Joshua had the presence of mind to attack June Mar. They’re actually denying everyone so he really didn’t have a choice but to go in,” said TNT head coach Nash Racela. “He has a big heart.”

“It’s always crucial to get the first win. We wanted to get that first win and we did it tonight without Ranidel and Ryan and that’s something that is very important to us.”

Meanwhile, Fajardo led the way for the Beermen with 18 points and 13 rebounds while Chris Ross posted a double-double with 11 points and 12 assists.

Game 2 of this series is on Friday, June 23.