After destroying the Hotshots in the Kings regain control

Dec 28, 2022

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PASIG CITY, Philippines –  in the last minute, Barangay Ginebra made sure not to witness a replay of that heartbreaking loss by starting strong and finishing even stronger in a retaliatory stand Sunday.

The Kings dominated Game Three, crushing the Hotshots 103-80, to take a crucial 2 to 1 lead in their half of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup best-of-five semifinals at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig.

Tim Cone, the coach of Ginebra, hinted at going all-out in an effort to end the series in Game Four on Wednesday at the MOA Arena in Pasay City by saying, “Obviously, we don’t want to go to Game Five.”

Ginebra playmaker LA Tenorio said, “I know it’s going to be tough, but it’s an opportunity for us to close it out.

The condition of Magnolia star Paul Lee, according to Cone, who claimed that his absence would deflate the Hotshots’ sails, would be a major deciding factor.

That was the case for Magnolia as Lee, who was the hero in the Hotshots’ dramatic 96 to 95 victory in Game Two, was only able to play for two minutes on Sunday due to an illness.

The Kings pounced on the Lee-less Hotshots, exploding out to a 10 to 0 run to start the game, soaring to a 49 to 34 advantage at halftime, and then extending their lead to as many as 25 before clinching the sweep.

The Kings’ Sunday assault was led by a lethal one-two punch of Tenorio and Justin Brownlee.

Brownlee scored 38 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, and dished out 7 assists.

By the end of the first half, he had joined Norman Black, Bobby Parks, Sean Chambers, and Lew Massey as the league’s fifth immigrant to reach the 5,000-point plateau.

To be listed with such legendary players is an accomplishment, according to Brownlee. “I’ve been playing for a while and I really enjoy it, that is what it basically means,” he continued. It’s a testament to my teammates for setting me up, to coach Tim, and to the entire squad, in addition to being a testament to them.

Brownlee outperformed Nick Rakocevic, who managed just 10 points and 12 rebounds in 37 minutes of play, by shooting 6-of-8 from beyond the arc to showcase his outstanding performance.

Tenorio scored four three-pointers and finished with 20 points to move up to third place on the all-time list of three-pointers made, ahead of Ronnie Magsanoc at No. 5 and James Yap at No. 4.

Scottie Thompson contributed 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists.

Jio Jalalon led the Magnolia team in scoring with 16 points despite their lack of danger.

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