The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel is scheduled for a Game 1 Championship round head-to-head match against the Talk ‘N Text TNT Tropang Giga at 6:00 PM on April 9, 2023 live from the Smart Araneta Coliseum at Quezon City, Metro Manila.
This year’s Easter Sunday will be more exciting especially for the fans of the Gin Kings and Tropang Giga as the two mammoth teams will clash in the Govs’ Cup Finals as they aim for the very first victory and use it to their advantage as the series progress.
In an Easter Sunday showdown at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, Barangay Ginebra and TNT Tropang Giga will face off for the championship in a classic matchup between some of the PBA’s most experienced talent and brightest stars. The Gin Kings, with decorated coach Tim Cone, are looking to secure their third consecutive PBA Governors’ Cup championship, while the Tropang Giga, under the guidance of interim coach Jojo Lastimosa, are looking to complete a Cinderella story. The two teams have dominated their respective semifinal opponents, and now comes the hard part in what many see as a knife-edge showdown.
Cone is aware of TNT’s strong offensive and defensive capabilities, saying, “There’s not going to be much advantage so we have to find a way to defend them.” He also drew inspiration from the Rocky movies, saying that the Gin Kings will come out slugging to see who will last seven rounds. Lastimosa, on the other hand, sees his team’s hunger for redemption after their forgettable showing in the last Commissioner’s Cup as a motivating factor, and believes that the Tropang Giga has a “really good shot at this.”
The Tropa may have the edge in the backcourt, with talented players like Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and the addition of Calvin Oftana, but the Kings may have the advantage in the frontcourt with Christian Standhardinger leading the charge. However, chemistry and teamwork have been an integral part of the Kings’ success in the past, with players like Stanley Pringle, Jamie Malonzo, and Jeremiah Gray joining the team.
In the elimination round, the Tropa outfought the Kings, with Hollis-Jefferson outscoring Justin Brownlee, but this is an entirely different game in the playoffs, which have been the Kings’ domain in recent years. The Tropang Giga’s success in the past few years, counting four finals in the last eight conferences and its ascent to the top in the 2021 Bacolor Philippine Cup bubble, is a testament to their skill and determination. With their first-time coach, the Tropa is also hoping to add Lastimosa to a cast of those who won a PBA crown right in their first tourney as a head coach.
Fans are excited to witness the mentor-mentee or teacher-student duel between Cone and Lastimosa, yet the real excitement lies in the hardcourt battle and marquee matchups that will ensue. The wait is over, and the “April Thrill” is set to explode on Easter Sunday. The Kings may be starting as the odds-on favorites, but the Tropang Giga can’t be taken for granted, and this championship matchup promises to be a thrilling and unforgettable showdown.