Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Gin Kings took home Wednesday night the 2020 Philippine Cup crown to end a 13-year drought in the league’s most prestigious tourney.
With the team’s 82-78 victory, warding off an injury-plagued but fierce-fighting TNT Tropang Giga, the Tim Cone-mentored Gin Kings, scored a twin-kill in 2020 as they captured the bubble glory in a follow-up to their Governors’ Cup title run completed in January.
As expected, it was the trio of Japeth Aguilar, who scored a career-high 32 points, on top of 8 rebounds and 3 steals, Stanley Pringle, and LA Tenorio who once again stepped up throughout the match, especially in the payoff period of Game 5, to seal the match for the Kings and capture the coveted PBA title.
Pringle finished with 13 points, 6 assists, and 4 rebounds, while Tenorio chalked up 10 points and 6 assists en route to clinching his fourth Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP) honors.
“Championship lang ang wish ko kay God, binigyan pa ako ng bonus,” said Tenorio, who was awarded the PBA Press Corps Honda Finals MVP award due to his crucial contributions in their victories in Game 1, 4, and 5.
“When this thing started, LA was in the hospital, we still don’t have Japeth and Greg (Slaughter) was out. We don’t have much expectation, and we’re saying ‘can we make the playoffs?'” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone.
“But credit to our guys. They just kept on working, working, and working and found a way to win it. I’m proud of them,” added Cone.
“Little bit of an unreal, kind of a surreal feeling being here. Everything is different – the celebration is different; the awarding is different. It is just a very different experience. But our guys really battled for this,” Cone further stressed.
It was the 13th overall for the Ginebra franchise and 23rd in all for Cone.
Roger Pogoy once again led the way for the Tropang Giga with 23 points and 8 rebounds, but the absences of injured star players Jayson Castro and Ray Parks certainly took a toll on the team.
Poy Erram had 18 points, 15 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 2 steals, Simon Enciso had 17 points and 5 assists, while Troy Rosario chimed in 12 points and 8 rebounds in the loss.
Ginebra vs TNT Tropang Giga
The scores: 19-19; 38-36; 55-56; 82-78
Gin Kings (82) – Aguilar 32, Pringle 13, Tenorio 10, Dillinger 8, Thompson 6, Mariano 5, Devance 2, Caperal 3, Chan 3, Tolentino 0.
Tropang Giga (78) – Pogoy 23, Erram 18, Enciso 17, Rosario 12, De Leon 6, Vosotros 2, Washington 0, Montalbo 0, Reyes 0, Carey 0.