Tim Cone reveals Ginebra tried to trade for Juami Tiongson
MANILA, Philippines—Juami Tiongson’s recent run of form–logging back-to-back career-high performances–may have surprised some, but Barangay Ginebra head coach Tim Cone wasn’t one of those stunned by it.
Cone said that he’s already had his eyes on Tiongson knowing the point guard would be valuable to any team. In fact, the Gin Kings even tried to orchestrate a trade with Terrafirma in 2020.
The Dyip, however, didn’t budge as Cone recounted their failed bid in Noli Eala’s Power & Play program.
“Juami didn’t surprise us, we tried to trade for him after the last bubble,” said Cone. “We made some overtures to Terrafirma to try to get Juami over to Ginebra and they turned us down. They wouldn’t let us have him.”
Tiongson led the Dyip to two consecutive wins over San Miguel and Ginebra, the first time in nine years that a team was able to beat the two giant franchises in successive fashion, while also tallying career-highs in both games.
The hot-shooting point guard first put up 28 points in Terrafirma’s 110-104 win over the Beermen then followed that up with a 31-point outing in the 95-90 victory over the Gin Kings, the first time in franchise history that Dyip won against Ginebra.
Cone said that Tiongson, a four-time UAAP champion with Ateneo, always had the talent but often played under the shadow of CJ Perez, who was eventually traded to San Miguel at the start of the season, and 2021 top overall pick Joshua Munzon.
“He was kinda under the radar because Terrafirma wasn’t winning games and of course, he was playing behind CJ Perez. But with Munzon out and CJ Perez traded, Juami has become the man. He’s shown he is capable,” said Cone.