WATCH: See it to believe it | PBA Opening’s Most Incredible Moments!

Brgy. Ginebra finally returns to the grind, starting its title-retention campaign in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup versus Converge Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The most successful team last season with two finals and a championship in the midseason tourney, the Gin Kings plunge back into action at 8 p.m. against the Converge side off to a fumbling start in the season.

Ginebra is bringing back its champion roster souped up by free agent recruit Maverick Ahanmisi but will be without resident champion import Justin Brownlee who’s facing uncertainty on the heels of his doping test result in the recent Asian Games.

The Kings will instead be with Tony Bishop, another high-caliber import who led the Meralco Bolts to a runner-up finish to the Gin Kings in the 2021 Governors’ Cup.

“Guys can’t wait to start playing in the PBA again,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone whose main guys were away from the team for over six months or since their second-place showing in the last Governors Cup ruled by the TNT Tropang Giga.

Scottie Thompson, Japeth Aguilar and Jamie Malonzo were with Cone serving duty to Gilas Pilipinas, leaving the other guys under the care of assistant coach Richard del Rosario in the preseason On Tour series. Christian Standhardinger and Stanley Pringles were also allowed to rest their bodies then.

From a brief break after steering Gilas to a historic campaign in the Hangzhou Games, Cone reassembled the team in a camp at the Inspire Sports Academy for their Season 48 buildup.

Christian Standhardinger
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