Brgy. Ginebra dealt the KO punch on “Manila Clasico” rival Magnolia Chicken Timplados, 99-84, to grab the first finals ticket in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Wednesday at the MOA Arena.
Justin Brownlee produced a monster outing of 24 points, 14 rebounds, six assists, two steals and five blocks while Japeth Aguilar delivered a conference-best 19 markers and eight boards to lead Ginebra to the smashing closeout.
With their 3-1 semis win against the Hotshots, the Gin Kings advanced to the finals for the fourth time in the last five conferences. This run includes two of their Governors’ Cup feats with Brownlee plus their triumph in the Philippine Cup bubble in Clark.
The crowd darlings now await the outcome of the other semis duel between Bay Area and defending champion San Miguel to determine their opponents in the best-of-seven championship series. The Dragons hold a 2-1 upperhand in this duel.
Game 1 of the finals starts on Christmas Day also at the MOA.
“I’m so thankful we don’t have to play a Game 5 against this team,” said Cone after finishing off the tough Hotshots.
“We talked about it: Just say no to Game 5. We had to put all our eggs in one basket in this game and we did. These guys didn’t leave anything, they didn’t look beyond this game.”