Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings target Philippine Cup crown
BARANGAY Ginebra wants an encore of its championship act last season as it looks to close out Meralco and keep its crown in the 2017 Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup Finals.
Ahead 3-2 in the best-of-seven championship showdown, the Gin Kings can claim the championship as they look to finish off the Bolts in Game 6 tonight at 7 p.m. at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan once more.
Knowing how dangerous Meralco is, Ginebra looks to do what it did last year and win the title on the first try and avoid a scary situation.
“It’s important for us to have this lead at this point but we have to finish it off right away,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone. “Meralco is too dangerous. We’re looking to end it and be at our best.”
While Ginebra aims at repeating what it did last year, Meralco is hoping to reverse the trend.
Meralco coach Norman Black cited several factors that will enable his Bolts to force a deciding Game 7.
“We have to be really aggressive. We can’t allow them (Ginebra) to hit us first,” said Black. “We also need more production from our starting backcourt (Baser Amer and Chris Newsome). That will really help us.”
After losing Games 3 and 4, the Gin Kings made sure they regained a grip of the series after a splendid finish the last time out.
Ginebra came through in the clutch in front of more than 30,000 enthusiasts in the pivotal Game 5 Sunday night where it posted a tough 85-74 triumph over Meralco to move a win away from its second straight Governors’ Cup championship.
The Gin Kings are in the exact same situation as they were a year ago against the Bolts.
They were also ahead 3-2 in last season’s finals against Meralco and they were able to end their title drought thanks to Justin Brownlee’s memorable buzzer-beating three-pointer.
The defending champions are definitely aiming for the same result.
On the other end, the Bolts are hoping to live for another day and force a Game 7.
Should they do so, the rubber match is scheduled Friday at the same venue.