The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel took advantage the Raymond Almazan-less Meralco Bolts to cruise Game 3 and take the 2-1 series lead.
Raymond Almazan injured his knee early in the first quarter as the match entered its midway portion.
Almazan unable to put weight on his injured leg and needed to be carried out by a teammate from the deck of the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Gin Kings took advantage without the middle presence of “Rock-en-Roll” Almazan particularly in the third quarter where they piled their largest lead of 23 points.
Stanley Pringle shifty attack puts his defender confused as “Stan-the-Man” was connecting almost anywhere from the floor. Pringle made 21 points, five rebounds, and four assists.
However, it was really Japeth Aguilar who made the big difference especially in the defensive end where he made seven swats including his 23 points production.
Barangay Ginebra’s import Justin Brownlee showcased once again his all-around game and this time around he was able to log nine dimes. In Game 1 and Game 2 combined, Brownlee only had one assist. He finished with an almost triple-double outing with 24 points, nine rebounds, and nine assists.
Another notable scenario in Game 3 was the entrance of Jared Dillinger who is a former Meralco Bolts player. He was not used in the first two games yet tonight coach Tim Cone gave him the chance to play against his former team in the Finals. Dillinger had over eleven minutes of playing time and his only stat is his one turnover and a personal foul.
Chris Newsome paced Meralco with his 24 points production while Allen Durham had 23 markers, 13 boards, and seven assists.
Most of the shooters of coach Norman Black who had a great shooting night during Game 2 in Lucena were heavily guarded. Still, the grand slam coach had his surprise and that time around it was Trevis Jackson.
Jackson sparked Meralco in the fourth quarter where they were able to trim the double-digit advantage to a much closer striking distance.
Yet, the night belongs to Ginebra as the Bolts failed to push the score even closer as they committed several turnovers or their shots unable to find the bottom of the net.
Stanley Pringle So Shifty
Ginebra Vs Meralco Game 3 Box Score
Gin Kings (92) – Brownlee 24, Aguilar 23, Pringle 21, Tenorio 11, Slaughter 6, Thompson 5, Devance 2
Bolts (84) – Newsome 24, Durham 23, Faundo 10, Jackson 8, Amer 6, Pinto 3, Quinto 2, Hodge 2, Almazan 2, Caram 2, Maliksi 2