PBA Governors' Cup

Hollis-Jefferson wishes Brownlee well after food poisoning mishap

Delfin Dioquino

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Hollis-Jefferson wishes Brownlee well after food poisoning mishap

ONE MORE. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and TNT are a win away from the PBA Governors' Cup crown.

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'If he can play next game, let's do it. But if not, at the end of the day, basketball is something that brings a lot of people together, but it's not what keeps people together,' says Rondae Hollis-Jefferson of Justin Brownlee

MANILA, Philippines – As focused as Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has been on winning, he understands that there are bigger things in life than basketball.

The TNT star wished Justin Brownlee well as the Barangay Ginebra import suffered from food poisoning in the all-important Game 5 of the PBA Governors’ Cup finals on Wednesday, April 19.

With Brownlee sitting out majority of the second half, Hollis-Jefferson and Tropang Giga completed a come-from-behind 104-95 win to seize a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.

“I’m not going to speak on the basketball side of things. I just want him to feel better,” said Hollis-Jefferson, who finished with a 32-point, 16-rebound, 10-assist triple-double.

“As a human, I don’t wish food poisoning on no one.”

Brownlee delivered early by churning out all of his 14 points and 4 rebounds in the first half, but he left the game in the third quarter and never returned.

Gin Kings head coach Tim Cone revealed after the game that the team sent Brownlee to the hospital.

While Ginebra hopes Brownlee to be fit again to play in Game 6 as it tries to force a sudden death, Hollis-Jefferson said health should come first.

“If he can play next game, let’s do it. But if not, at the end of the day, basketball is something that brings a lot of people together, but it’s not what keeps people together,” said Hollis-Jefferson.

“It’s about yourself, taking care of yourself, and feeling good. I’ll pray for him and send my well-wishes to him.”

Hollis-Jefferson and Brownlee have been pitted against each other ever since their first PBA matchup.

The two figured in a tight battle for the Best Import honors, with Hollis-Jefferson edging Brownlee for the award – a result that polarized fans.

But Hollis-Jefferson only has good things to say about Brownlee.

“I love his game. I think he’s a phenomenal person so I just want him to feel better. Take care of his body, take care of whatever he needs to,” Hollis-Jefferson said.

Game 6 is on Friday, April 21, at the Araneta Coliseum. – Rappler.com

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.