The Gin Kings played inspired basketball from start to finish to claim the Commissioner's Cup championship.
In basketball, Game 7 is where players gave it their all. That’s why it’s rare to pull off a lopsided victory. It’s almost always a swashbuckling game, where the best players from both teams trade baskets, dive for loose balls, or commit “playoff fouls.”
But not for Ginebra.
Playing inspired against a guest team before a new all-time attendance record of 54,589, the Gin Kings claimed the PBA Commissioner’s Cup championship with a 114-99 win over Bay Area on Sunday at the Philippine Arena.
Ginebra led by as much as 28 points, 75-47, but the Dragons trimmed that gap little by little behind spitfire import Myles Powell.
The Gin Kings, though, was quick to regain composure and held the fort until the final buzzer and hoist the franchise’s 15th championship.
The 28-point buffer was in fact the biggest in the classic series. It eclipsed the 20-point lead of the Dragons in the homestretch of Game 2.
“We were totally surprised at how well we played and that we’re able to handle Bay Area. The only explanation we can really give is the crowd really lifted us into that kind of performance,” said Cone.
“You know when you have that massive crowd behind you, you play better than you are. and we played better than we are today. And every person in that arena is important to that win. So we can’t thank them enough for showing up.”
To date, San Miguel Beermen’s 119-87 victory over Talk ‘N Text in Game 7 of the Finals last conference has remained as the most lopsided Game 7 ever, according to PBA chief statistician Fidel Mangonon.
Behind CJ Perez and eventual Finals MVP June Mar Fajardo, the Beermen staged a spirited 35-5 rally to open the fourth period and never looked back.
Winning by at least 15 points in a Game 7 was so rare the last time a team won by that margin or more was in 2002, when Purefoods beat Alaska, 91-76 in the deciding match of the Governors’ Cup Finals.
That made Ginebra’s conquest extra special.
“Sobrang sarap kasi alam natin inaabangan ng mga fans 'to. Isa 'to sa pinaka magandang championship sa’min. Sobrang inspired namin,” said reigning Best Player of the Conference Scottie Thompson after the match.