Kings hope to play big as they seek Finals slot
Barangay Ginebra is expected to play big—literally—as the Gin Kings try to negate the quickness of TNT KaTropa when they seek a Finals slot in the PBA Governors’ Cup Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“We have four bigs who are very agile,” said Ginebra guard LA Tenorio after the Kings snatched a 2-1 lead in their best-of-five semifinal series with a 106-103 win Friday.
“That’s our strength and we have to take advantage of that,” added Tenorio.
The Kings hope that strategy closes out the Texters Sunday and arrange a rematch for the crown against Meralco, which badly wants to rebound from losing the Finals last year.
Allen Durham, Jared Dillinger, Baser Amer, Ranidel De Ocampo and the Bolts swept the Star Hotshots in the other semifinal pairing.
Starring Glen Rice Jr. and speedy guard Jason Castro, the Ka Tropa nearly toppled the Kings in Game 3 if not for a couple of miscues and Joe Devance’s heroics down the stretch.
“We tried to pound it inside and they used their quickness to blow by our big guys,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone. “Again, we played our style and they played their style. I’m sure it’s going to be the same in Game 4.”
Seven-footer Greg Slaughter and 6-foot-9 Japeth Aguilar form Ginebra’s formidable frontline quartet together with the 6-foot-7 De Vance and 6-foot-5 import Justin Brownlee.
Rice attempted in vain to neutralize the Gin Kings’ imposing ceiling by scoring 44 points last time out built on sheer quickness and athleticism.
On the defensive end, the Texters have to bring out the best from Kelly Williams, Troy Rosario and Anthony Semerad to contain Ginebra’s bigs.
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