The 8-year dry spell is broken at last.
Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, the league’s most popular ballclub, is back on top of the mountain as champion of the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup after withstanding a valiant stand by the Meralco Bolts, 91-88, in Game 6 on Wednesday, October 19 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
After 8 agonizingly long years and a slew of disappointments, the Gin Kings clinched the franchise’s 9th title, a delayed follow-up to their 2008 Fiesta Conference championship.
Import Justin Brownlee delivered Ginebra to the promised land with the championship-clinching 3-pointer from the top of the key at the final buzzer, breaking the 88-all deadlock for the final time.
Brownlee’s big triple capped a long cerebral chess match between champion coaches Tim Cone and Norman Black and it completed the Gin Kings’ comeback from a slow 18-4 start and a 13-point deficit at the half.
Brownlee finished with a game-high 31 points on top of 9 rebounds and 4 assists. Rookie Scottie Thompson contributed 10 points, two assists, two steals, and a block off the bench.
Veteran guard LA Tenorio was named Finals MVP with his 17.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists in the series. He had 25 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists in Game 6, including 14 points in a backbreaking 33-21 third quarter Ginebra rally to get back into the game.