Brgy. Ginebra snapped out of a two-game funk and celebrated the return of head coach Tim Cone with a 7-point win over NorthPort, 100-93, Sunday in the elimination round of the PBA Season 47 Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
The Gin Kings went up by as much as 22 points but had to pull their acts together in the closing minutes of the match to overcome Robert Bolick’s hot-shooting night and pick up their 7th win in 10 outings while dealing the Batang Pier their 7th defeat against only three victories.
Scottie Thompson dished out a performance fit for a reigning MVP and finished with a stat line of 23 points on 11-of-16 shooting to go with 15 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals and 3 blocks in 42 minutes of action.
“We’re still trying to put our teeth out, trying to get the effort that we need. After you come off a championship there’s always these flaws in your team and you have to handle that,” said Cone who’s fresh off a coaching gig with the Miami Heat’s NBA Summer League squad.
“Sometimes, you need a kick on the rear end to get yourself going and the past two games gave us that kick on the rear end,” he added.
Nards Pinto came off the bench and scored a conference-high 18 markers highlighted by 4-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc. The 19th overall pick of the 2014 draft also tallied 6 rebounds, 3 assists and a steal.
Japeth Aguilar contributed 14 points while LA Tenorio and Jeff Chan chipped in 13 and 11 markers, respectively. Christian Standhadringer added 9 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assiss.
Bolick finished with 29 while Jamie Malonzo, Arwin Santos and Kevin Ferrer contributed 19, 14 and 13 points, respectively.
The Gin Kings will try to finish the elims on a winning note when they clash with Phoenix on Thursday, July 21, 7:15pm at the same venue.