Brgy. Ginebra ended 13 years of futility in the All-Filipino conference after the crowd darlings defeated an undermanned TNT side, 82-78, in Game 5 of the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup Finals, Wednesday night at the Angeles University Foundation Sports Arena and Cultural Center in Angeles City, Pampanga.
The Gin Kings handily won the best-of-seven series, 4-1, to capture their 4th Philippine Cup title and the first since 2007. It was the team’s 13th overall, equalizing legendary Crispa’s record for most in league history.
Head coach Tim Cone, on the other hand, bagged his 23rd PBA title – 5th with the Gin Kings. He won 13 with Alaska and 5 with Magnolia before moving over to Brgy. Ginebra at the start of Season 41.
“Kind of a surreal feeling being here. Everything’s different — the celebration is different, the awarding is different. It’s just a very different experience. But our guys really battled for this,” said Cone during the post-game press conference.
“It’s so unique, this championship. There’s only been one, it’s in the bubble. This is going to be one that’s going to be remembered. It’s just so unique, and I think it’s going to be remembered forever. And it’s nice to have that legacy. Our players, even our young rookies, they’re going to remember this bubble championship,” he added.
Cone was all praises for the Tropang Giga whom he thinks will be a dominant force in the years to come.
“I think everybody’s gonna have a rivalry against Talk ‘N Text. I mean, they’re primed to really step into another level. Jayson I think has a couple of really good years left as long as he can stay healthy. But aside from that, their core is very young with Troy, Pogoy and Enciso and Bobby Ray, who’s still a second-year player,” said Cone.
“So they have a really, really young core that they’re going to build on, and I think they’re just going to get better and better. And I think that if we’re all not careful, they will become the dominant team over the next few years.”
Japeth Aguilar paced the Gin Kings with a career-best tying 32 points to go with 9 boards, 2 assists and 3 steals. Stanley Pringle, who was held to 2 points in the opening half, finished with 13 while LA Tenorio and Jared Dillinger chipped in 10 and 8 markers, respectively.
Brgy. Ginebra 82 – J. Aguilar 32, Pringle 13, Tenorio 10, Dillinger 8, Thompson 6, Mariano 5, Caperal 3, Chan 3, Devance 2, Tolentino 0.
TNT 78 – Pogoy 23, Erram 18, Enciso 17, Rosario 12, De Leon 6, Vosotros 2, Carey 0, Montalbo 0, Reyes 0, Washington 0.
Quarterscores: 19-19; 38-36; 55-56; 82-78.