PBA Commissioner’s Cup

Cone hails Brownlee after big bounce-back game: ‘Beware if you doubt Justin’

Delfin Dioquino
Cone hails Brownlee after big bounce-back game: ‘Beware if you doubt Justin’

MR. CLUTCH. Justin Brownlee takes over down the stretch as Ginebra wards off Meralco.

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Resident import Justin Brownlee regains his bearings and steers Ginebra to the winning track after an uncharacteristic subpar performance

MANILA, Philippines – Justin Brownlee always finds a way to redeem himself. Just ask Tim Cone.

Cone knew it would not take long for Brownlee to regain his bearings as the veteran import powered Barangay Ginebra to a 99-91 win over Meralco in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Sunday, October 2.

Brownlee finished with 34 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals to recover from his subpar showing in a 22-point loss to Rain or Shine, a shocking defeat where he uncharacteristically shot a poor 28% clip.

“He turned in one of his clunkers. He’ll have an occasional clunker,” Cone said of Brownlee.

“I always tell my wife that if you turn on the TV and you never watched the PBA and you watch Justin in one of those clunker games of his, you’ll think why the heck is he in this league? How could he possibly be an import?”

“But you just know he is going to bounce back. His history is that he bounces back and he has done that throughout his five, six years that he has been here,” Cone added.

True enough, the 34-year-old authored the kind of performance that has endeared him to PBA fans as he took over in the fourth quarter, where he dropped 13 points.

He scored the Gin Kings’ last 8 points in the final two minutes to keep the Bolts at bay.

“I think the moment you start to doubt Justin, I think you’re a little bit silly. I just think you just got to keep with him and stay with him and he is going to deliver like he did tonight, like he did in the playoffs,” Cone said.

For Cone, Brownlee has proven countless times that he will step up when needed the most.

A prime example of that is the Governors’ Cup last season, where Ginebra finished the elimination round as the sixth seed and Brownlee failed to crack the top five of the statistical battle for the Best Import award.

By the time the tournament ended, though, Brownlee secured his second Best Import plum and led the Gin Kings to his fifth championship with the team.

“I remember halfway through the last conference he was here, everyone was wondering, are we going to change Justin? Does he need to be changed? And then we swept through a championship.”

“Beware if you doubt Justin.” – 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.