Philippine Showbiz Today Vol 11 No 20 - Page 22

22 Philippine Showbiz Today SPORTS October 22 - November 7, 2016 Final Score: 91-88 Basketball Ginebra beats Meralco in Game 6 of PBA 2016 Governors Cup Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, the league’s most popular ballclub, is back on top of the mountain as champion of the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup after withstanding a valiant stand by the Meralco Bolts, 91-88, in Game 6 on Wednesday, October 19 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. After eight agonizingly long years and a slew of disappointments, the Gin Kings clinched the franchise’s 9th title, a delayed follow-up to their 2008 Fiesta Conference championship. Import Justin Brownlee delivered Ginebra to the promised land with the championship- clinching 3-pointer from the top of the key at the final buzzer, breaking the 88-all deadlock for the final time. Brownlee’s big triple capped a long cerebral chess match between champion coaches Tim Cone and Norman Black and it completed the Gin Kings’ comeback from a slow 18-4 start and a 13-point deficit at the half. Brownlee finished with a game-high 31 points on top of 9 rebounds and 4 assists. Rookie Scottie Thompson contributed 10 points, two assists, two steals, and a block off the bench. Veteran guard LA Tenorio was named Finals MVP with his 17.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists in the series. He had 25 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists in Game 6, including 14 points in a backbreaking 33-21 third quarter Ginebra rally to get back into the game. Japeth Aguilar had 7 points and 9 boards, as Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand combined for 11 points. Ginebra, in its 22nd finals appearance, won the best-of- 7 series in 6 grueling, tightly- contested games and on the combined strength of its young guns and veterans. Two-time Grand Slam coach Cone, who was appointed head Quarter scores: 18-27, 32-45, 65- coach of the Gin Kings just before 66, 91-88. ● this season, steered Ginebra to – Jane Bracher, Rappler victory with the Living Legend Robert “Sonny” Jaworski in attendance and before a roaring crowd of 22,528 people. It is Cone’s 19th PBA title overall and his 93rd finals triumph. Cone coincidentally achieved the feat on the 93rd birthday of his coaching idol, the late great Baby Dalupan. Rookie of the Year Chris Ginebra import Brownlee shot a winning 3-pointer Newsome led the Bolts with 19 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists. Best Import Allen Durham was shackled to just 15 markers on 7-of-15 field goals, along with 10 rebounds. Reynel Hugnatan and Jimmy Alapag added 12 and 8 points, respectively, as Meralco failed Former Ginebra San Miguel player-coach ex- to go all the way in its first finals Senator Robert Jaworski in the stands appearance in franchise history. Scores: Ginebra (91): Brownlee 31, Tenorio 25, Thompson 10, Aguilar 7, Caguioa 6, Helterbrand 5, Ellis 4, Marcelo 3, Cruz 0, Devance 0, Mercado 0. Meralco (88): Newsome 19, Durham 15, Hugnatan 12, Alapag 8, Faundo 8, Uyloan 7, Amer 6, Hodge 6, Nabong 4, Caram 3. Chot Reyes returns as Gilas coach Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) senior adviser to the president Ricky Vargas announced the reappointment of Vincent “Chot” Reyes as head coach of Gilas Pilipinas men’s national basketball team on Tuesday. The SBP, led by its president Al Panlilio and chairman Senator Sonny Angara, said that Gilas coach Tab Baldwin would assume his old position as team consultant. “He (Reyes) doesn’t loss the coaching touch. He stays in touch with all the Gilas Cadet players and hold a very good relationship with them which serves as his biggest strength,” Vargas told The Manila Times in a phone interview. “In terms of coaching technicality, he still has it.” “We welcome his appoint- ment and that’s a collective decision from our part in the SBP.” Gilas Pilipinas team manager and SBP Deputy Director for International Affairs Butch Antonio said that Reyes, being the coach of Gilas, would not be in conflict with his other job as president of television network TV5. “We already thought about it and we believed coach Chot can do both task. I’m pretty sure he’ll have a good staff for TV5 and Gilas. Maybe, he can do the corporate work in the morning until the afternoon and then Gilas basketball practice in the evening,” Antonio said. “We’re just going to the same old set up during the 2013 to 2014 when Tab Baldwin served as team consultant of Coach C hot. We didn’t find any problem with that,” added Antonio. “For the part of Baldwin, he remains a part of Gilas.” Vargas said that the association valued Reyes’ huge contribution to Gilas Pilipinas when he led the team back to the FIBA World Cup two years ago in Spain following the squad’s first runner up finish in the 2013 FIBA Asia men’s basketball championship in Manila. “During the time of Reyes, the term ‘puso’ became viral all over the nation and became meaningful in the international scene especially in the 2014 FIBA World Cup and 2013 FIBA Asia,” added Vargas. “At the same time, his contribution to Philippine basketball is huge.” Despite Gilas Pilipinas finishing seventh in the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea, Vargas said they decided to rehire Reyes because of his experience as national coach. “We considered the totality of coach Chot’s performance,” said Vargas. “What happened in the last Asian Games is only a minor setback compared to what he has done to Philippine basketball. MVP (Manny V. Pangilinan) has a blessing of coach’s reappointment.” SBP Executive Director Sonny Barrios, a former commissioner of the Philippine Basketball Association, said the relegation of Baldwin to national team consultant from being head coach is collective decision of the management. “It is a call of top manage- ment,” Barrios said during an interview. “When Baldwin was serving as a team consultant while Chot was the head coach, Gilas Pilipinas made it to the FIBA World Cup and finished first runner-up in the FIBA Asia.” “I think the top management based its decision on the winning combination of that set up and among other set ups,” added Barrios. “We are hoping that magic set up will work positively again. It is really a preparation for one Olympic cycle in the new FIBA calendar.” “This is not just for one tournament preparation but of course our target is to reach the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.” After the 2014 Asian Games, Reyes was replaced by Baldwin as Gilas coach. Under Baldwin, Gilas finished first runner-up in the 2015 FIBA Asia behind champion China and made it to the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in July hosted by the Philippines. Gilas, however, lost to France and New Zealand in that tournament and failed to secure a Rio Olympics berth.● - J. T Ramos, TMT