PBA Commissioner’s Cup

Cone admits added motivation after rout of Bay Area: ‘We’re not only representing Ginebra’

Delfin Dioquino
Cone admits added motivation after rout of Bay Area: ‘We’re not only representing Ginebra’

BEATEN. After a stellar 4-0 start, Bay Area absorbs its first loss in the PBA at the hands of Barangay Ginebra.

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Barangay Ginebra proves PBA guest team Bay Area Dragons are no longer invincible as it powers through an 18-point victory

MANILA, Philippines – Not in the Gin Kings’ house.

Tim Cone admitted he had extra motivation in facing guest team Bay Area as Barangay Ginebra became the first squad to beat the Dragons in the Commissioner’s Cup by way of a 111-93 thrashing on Sunday, October 9.

Bay Area ran roughshod over PBA teams and even Korean Basketball League club Changwon LG Sakers in tuneup games and started the conference with a 4-0 record before they got a dose of reality.

“For me personally, I have so many reasons to get motivated. They have been beating everybody up,” said the 24-time PBA champion coach.

“We’re not only representing Ginebra, we’re representing the whole league. And in many ways, we’re representing the country,” Cone added. “So yeah, we were really motivated.”

Despite switching imports from Myles Powell to Andrew Nicholson, the Dragons looked like the same team that dominated the PBA as they kept within the Gin Kings’ striking distance in the first half.

But Justin Brownlee dropped 18 of his season-high 46 points in the third quarter as Ginebra broke the game wide open, proving Bay Area is no longer invincible.

“That felt like a finals game to us. It really did. And I had that feeling all the way through the day. You asked earlier if we were motivated, and yes, we were motivated,” Cone said.

Aside from the win, though, Cone relished being on the same court as the Dragons’ Brian Goorjian, a legendary coach who won multiple champions in the National Basketball League in Australia.

Goorjian is also the man who guided the Australia Boomers to their first and only Olympic medal in history when they clinched bronze in the Tokyo Games last year.

“My gosh. I’ve been hearing his name for years. I’ve been hearing his name for the last 30 years. And the fact that I was even on the same floor with him is such an honor,” Cone said.

“I guess for the night I get the bragging rights. It was such an honor to coach against him and his team.”

For Cone, the blowout gave him a preview of how strong the Gin Kings could become with new guys Jamie Malonzo and Jeremiah Gray easing into their roles at Ginebra.

Malonzo backstopped Brownlee with 17 points and 6 rebounds, while Gray had 5 points and 3 rebounds in limited minutes in his PBA debut.

“This is basically the new Ginebra in many ways,” Cone said.

“We expect them to really get better and this is kind of a glimpse of how good we can be if we’re at the top of our game. We were certainly at the top of our game tonight.” – 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.