If Justin Brownlee’s last 2 games is an indication of how Brgy. Ginebra’s humble reinforcement will play for the rest of the conference, then expect 31-year old native of Tifton, Georgia to set a league record of sorts as far as triple-doubles are concerned.
Against NLEX in Dubai, Brownlee scored 42 points, hauled down 20 rebounds and issued 10 assists – a statline nobody in the history of league has ever recorded. The Road Warriors, though, had the last laugh as they completed a 28-point fightback to pull off a 113-111 victory much to the dismay of the predominantly Brgy. Ginebra crowd at the Coca-Cola Arena.
A week after that heart-breaking loss, the Gin Kings faced the Grand Slam-seeking and still undefeated San Miguel Beermen and this time managed to secure the much-needed win to snap out of a 2-game slide and improve to 2-2.
Brownlee stuffed the stat sheets anew by dropping 28 points, collaring 14 rebounds and dishing out 14 assists as the Gin Kings dealt its powerhouse sister team its first defeat of the conference after winning the first four.
Brgy. Ginebra coach Tim Cone lauded his import’s performance along with the superhuman effort that went with it.
“That’s becoming a norm for him, right? It’s surprising when he doesn’t get a triple-double,” said Cone. “I was just trying to keep him fresh, which is impossible to do because he plays with such heart all the time. He’s not one of those guys who coast for a little bit and then plays hard. He just goes at it. That’s why a lot of times when six to eight minutes a game, he’s battling cramps. He’s in tremendous shape and he just gives his all, all the time.”
“So I’m the one who has to really hold him back and make sure he gets that rest because he can’t do it himself. It’s just not in his nature, so it’s on me to find time to pull him out of the game. It’s hard for me discipline-wise because I want him out there all the time, but I just have to stay disciplined and remind myself that we need him for the last six minutes,” added the league’s most successful bench tactician.