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Ginebra vs. Smart Gilas

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009
October 23, 2009
2:30 pmto4:30 pm

Friday/ October 23/ Cuneta

2:30pm Ginebra vs. Smart Gilas
5:00pm Purefoods vs. Barako Bull
7:30pm Coke vs. Alaska

Saturday/ October 24/ Araneta

5:00pm Burger King vs. Rain or Shine

Barangay Ginebra Kings vs. Burger King Titans @ Cuneta

Thursday, February 26th, 2009
March 6, 2009
7:30 pmto9:30 pm

5:00 p.m. Barako Bull Energy Boosters vs. Coca-Cola Tigers
7:30 p.m. Barangay Ginebra Kings vs. Burger King Titans

Coca-Cola Tigers vs. Barangay Ginebra Kings @ Ynares

Thursday, February 26th, 2009
March 4, 2009
7:30 pmto9:30 pm

5:00 p.m. Alaska Aces vs. San Miguel Beermen
7:30 p.m. Coca-Cola Tigers vs. Barangay Ginebra Kings

PBA BEST-OF-7 AND OTHER TRIVIA

Tuesday, August 19th, 2008

PBA BEST-OF-7 AND OTHER TRIVIA

  • This is the 22st Game 7 in PBA history, the 3rd straight in the Finals and 16th overall.

  • Only 10 of the 21 teams which survived Game 6 and forced a Game 7 went on to win the series, or a 48% battling average for the team with the momentum going to the do-or-die game.
  • However, it is 9 of 15 in the Finals, or a higher 60%.
  • Air21 is in its 1st ever Game 7.
  • In the past 22 Game 7s in PBA Finals history, there were a total of 12 1st timers in a Game 7 PBA Finals and 7 of them won, the last Sta. Lucia in the previous conference. The other 6 were:
  • Coca-Cola in the 2003 Reinforced Conference vs. San Miguel Beer
  • Red Bull in the 2002 Commissioner’s Cup vs. Talk ‘N Text
  • Sunkist in the 1995 All-Filipino Cup vs. Alaska
  • Ginebra in the 1991 First Conference vs. Shell
  • Presto Tivoli in the 1990 All-Filipino Conference vs. Purefoods
  • Toyota in the 1982 Reinforced Conference vs. San Miguel Beer
  • The Ginebra franchise is in a Finals Game 7 for the 1st time since the 1991 First Conference Finals when it battled back from 1-3 series deficit against Shell to win the championship. The team was still under playing coach Sonny Jaworski back then.
  • IThe last time Barangay Ginebra was actually in a Game 7 was in the semifinals of the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference against Red Bull which it lost 83-79.
  • In that series, the Kings were actually down 1-3 but won the next 2 games to force that Game 7.
  • 10 of the 18 teams which survived Game 6 and forced a Game 7 went on to win the series, or a 56% battling average for the team with the momentum going to the do-or-die game.

Game 7 records:

  • Air21 0-0

  • Brgy. Ginebra 1-1
  • Do-or-die records this conference:
  • Air21 0-0
  • Brgy. Ginebra 1-0
  • Finals appearances:
  • Air21 1
  • Brgy. Ginebra 17
  • PBA championships:
  • Air21 0
  • Brgy. Ginebra 7
  • Since it was first implemented in the PBA in the 1982 Reinforced Conference, there had already been 69 best-of-7 series, 57 of them Finals. This will hence be 70th best-of-7 series in league history, the 58th in the Finals.

Gametime: 7:00 p.m.

  • Game 7 of a best-of-7 series for the championship

  • Series recap:
    1. Game 1: Wed, Aug. 6 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum) Barangay Ginebra 105, Air21 96

    2. Game 2: Fri., Aug. 8 ’08 (Ynares Center) Air21 124, Barangay Ginebra 90
    3. Game 3: Sun., Aug. 10 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum) Air21 97, Barangay Ginebra 87
    4. Game 4: Wed., Aug. 13 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum) Barangay Ginebra 90, Air21 77
    5. Game 5: Fri., Aug. 15 ’08 (Cuneta Astrodome) Air21 76, Barangay Ginebra 73
    6. Game 6: Sun., Aug. 17 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum) Barangay Ginebra 80, Air21 75
  • Game 6 recap:
    1. It was a come-from-behind win by the Kings who started slow, getting outscored by the Express 14-0 in the 1st 4:50 of the game and went on to trail by as much as 16 in the 2nd period.

    2. Best Player of the Game – Chris Alexander 37 pts, 15 of 22 FGs, 24 rebs, 3 stls, 2 blks, 1 ast.
    3. It was the 2nd of just 4 30-20 games in the conference and he is the only 1 to have more than 1.
    4. Alexander was at the forefront when Barangay Ginebra took the lead for good via a 13-0 run in the final 3:11 of the 3rd period where he had 10 pts.
    5. The Kings won the game despite continuing to miss the services of Jay-Jay Helterbrand and despite Mark Caguioa being held to just 5 pts. his lowest output in a game since being held to the same output last Jan. 4 when Barangay Ginebra still defeated Red Bull 115-110 in the elims of the previous conference.
    6. Eric Menk was the only other player in double figures for the Kings with his 10 pts.
    7. Air21, which shot just 32% from the field, had 4 players scoring in double figures led by the 20 and 16 respectively of Steven Thomas and Ranidel de Ocampo.
  • So far in this series, the team which won the following statistical category has always ended up winning the game:
    1. Rebounding

    2. Fastbreak pts.
    3. Fewer fouls
  • The Kings improved to 9-11 this conference when they don’t score at least 100 pts. in a game. They are 11-0 when scoring at least 100.
  • Air21 is 15-4 this conference when limiting opponents to less than 100 pts. in a game with 3 of the losses happening here in the Finals. They are 4-7 when opponents score at least 100.
  • In the previous conference, Air21 was 5-1 when limiting opponents to less than 100 pts. in a game and was 3-11 otherwise.
  • The Game 6 win enabled Barangay Ginebra to live for another day and move a win away from regaining the Fiesta Conference title it won in 2004 with Torraye Braggs as import.
  • No team has won the Fiesta title more than once.
  • Barangay Ginebra head coach Jong Uichico is also a win away from his 8th title.
  • This is is 2nd Finals stint with the Kings and is looking to go 2-for-2 with them, having steered the crowd-favorites to last season’s Philippine Cup title against former team San Miguel Beer.
  • Uichico’s 1st 9 PBA Finals stints which resulted in 6 championships happened with the Beermen with whom he started his head coaching career in 1999.
  • Uichico is 1 of only 7 coaches in PBA history to have won titles with different teams — after Baby Dalupan, Tommy Manotoc, Norman Black, Ed Ocampo, Chot Reyes and Yeng Guiao.
  • But Uichico is looking to join Dalupan, Manotoc, Reyes and Guiao to win at least 2 championships with more than 1 team.
  • Coaching win-loss record in the PBA: 289-181 (0.615)
  • Has the highest win pct. among the active coaches
  • Uichico is only in his 2nd Finals Game 7 and he lost his 1st with San Miguel Beer in the 2003 Reinforced Conference against Coca-Cola and Chot Reyes.
  • Despite the Game 6 loss, Air21 still has one more chance to taste its 1st PBA championship.
  • The Express are 1 of 2 teams still without a title, the other team being Welcoat.
  • Air21 is looking to become the 1st team to win a championship in its 1st PBA Finals stint since Coca-Cola in the 2002 All-Filipino Cup.
  • Air21 head coach Bo Perasol is also looking to become the 1st coach to win a PBA title on his 1st stint in a PBA Finals since Siot Tanquingcen with Barangay Ginebra in the 2004 Fiesta Conference.
  • Perasol, who took over the Express starting in the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference, is 1 of only 3 coaches among the active PBA head coaches without a title, the other 2 being Coca-Cola’s Binky Favis and Welcoat’s Caloy Garcia.
  • Among the 3, Perasol is actually the only 1 to have been in the Final 4 which he has already done twice and the only 1 to steer his team to a PBA Finals.
  • The Express are looking to win a PBA title in their 6th season and 15th conference in the league.
  • A championship will also add to Air21’s list of many “firsts” this conference:
    1. 1st ever outright semis berth

    2. 1st time to finish the elims at No. 1
    3. Most no. of wins in an elims (12) and conference (19 so far).
    4. 1st time to lead in a best-of-7 series
    5. 1st time to win a best-of-7 series
    6. 1st time in a Game 7
    7. 1st time to win a Game 7
  • The Express already have 19 wins this conference, the most no. of wins in a conference in franchise history, breaking the 17 which they recorded in their 3rd place finish in the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference, their best finish in a regular conference before this tourney
  • If the Express go on to win the championship, it will be the 1st time in 10 years no SMC team won a title in a season, the last time happening in 1998 when Alaska and Shell won the 3 titles at stake.
  • Barangay Ginebra is in danger of being eliminated by Air21 for the 2nd straight conference.
  • The last time the Kings were in a do-or-die situation was in the previous Philippine Cup wildcard phase when they lost to the Express 119-110 behind a career-high 32 pts. from Wynne Arboleda built around a 7-for-13 shooting from 3-point range and which came with 10 rebs., 4 asts and 1 stl. last Jan. 18.
  • Arboleda is coming off his worst game in the series, finishing with just 2 pts., 3 rebs, 2 asts, 1 stl. largely as a result of foul trouble.
  • The Game 6 win was Barangay Ginebra 1st win in its last 4 do-or-die games dating back to the 2006 Philippine Cup best-of-5 quarterfinals against Red Bull.
  • Prior to Game 6, the last time the Kings won a do-or-die game was actually against Air21 in that same 2006 Philippine Cup specifically in Game 3 of a best-of-3 wildcard series which they won in overtime 118-114 behind a career-high 45 points from Caguioa.
  • Barangay Ginebra head coach Jong Uichico is 3-0 in best-of-7 series with the Kings since he took over the team starting last season.
  • In last season’s Philippine Cup, he was able to steer Barangay Ginebra to series wins in the semis (after being down 1-2 vs. Talk ‘N Text) and in the Finals (after being down 0-2 against San Miguel Beer).
  • However, Uichico’s teams are 0-3 when down 2-3 in a best-of-7, although they were able to force a Game 7 in the last 2 – both times while still with San Miguel Beer: vs. Red Bull in the 2006 Philippine Cup semis and vs. Coca-Cola in the 2003 Reinforced Conference Finals.
  • The Kings have now won 18 of their last 22 games dating back to the elims and are 19-6 since Alexander replaced Ernest Brown.
  • Aside from Games 2, 3 & 5, Barangay Ginebra’s only other loss in its last 22 games was an 86-82 decision in the elims to Red Bull last June 1.
  • The Kings’ 2 other losses with Alexander were to Air21 97-88 last May 7 and to Talk ‘N Text 105-95 last May 11.
  • Barangay Ginebra is also now 19-8 since acquiring Junthy Valenzuela from Red Bull last April 14 in exchange for its 2009 2nd round and 2010 1st round Draft picks.
  • Prior to the Games 2 and 3 defeats, the Kings had won 13 straight games dating back to the eliminations.
  • It was the longest win streak by any PBA team in 12 years or since Alaska’s 13-game win streak en route to the 1996 Governors Cup title and the 4th grandslam feat in league history.

Updated head-to-head-

  • This conference 4-all

  • Last conference 2-1, Air21’s favor
  • Last season 4-0, Barangay Ginebra’s favor
  • The Kings were the only team the Express were winless against last season.
  • 2007 Fiesta Conference 2-0, Barangay Ginebra’s favor
  • The Kings won the 2 games by an average margin of 13.0 pts.
  • Overall (or since 2002): 19-14, Barangay Ginebra’s favor (11-9 in conferences
    with imports)

Top players

  • AIR21

  • Steven Thomas (Finals) 17.5ppg, 37%FG, 18.0 rpg, 2.3apg, 1.2bpg (Semis) 13.0ppg, 33%FG, 15.0rpg, 3.2apg, 1.6spg,2.0 bpg (Conf) 20.4 ppg, 47% FG,16.6rpg, 3.4apg,0.8spg,1.6bpg
    1. 2nd overall in the conference in mins. played (41.4, behind Alexander’s 41.9), 6th in scoring, 3rd in rebounding, 6th in shotblocks

    2. 1 of 5 imports who were able to keep their jobs from start to finish this conference (out of 12), the other 4 being Holcomb, Dixon, Parada and Gainous
  • Arwind Santos (Finals)14.0ppg,31% 3pts(8/26),8.8rpg,1.0apg,1.7spg,1.3bpg (Semis) 13.5 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 1.2 bpg (Conf) 13.8 ppg, 27% 3pts, 8.3 rpg, 1.3 apg, 1.1 spg, 1.4 bpg
    1. 7th overall in the conference in shotblocks, No. 1among locals

    2. 4th among locals in the conference in rebounding, 10th in scoring
    3. Finished runner-up in the MVP balloting behind Kelly Williams of Sta. Lucia and made it to the Mythical First Team for the 1st time in his career and to the All-Defensive Team for the 2nd straight season
  • Gary David (Finals) 16.3 ppg, 33% 3pts(11/33),3.0rpg, 1.0 apg,0.8 spg (Semis) 20.7 ppg, 43.3% 3pts (13/30), 3.3 rpg, 1.8 apg (Conf) 16.0 ppg, 36% 3pts (50/140), 2.5 rpg, 1.4 apg
    1. 6th overall in the conference in free-throw shooting (81.2%),

    2. 8th among locals in the conference in scoring
  • Ranidel de Ocampo (Finals) 11.0 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 1.7 apg (Semis) 13.3 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.7 apg
    (Conf) 11.3 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.3 apg

  • Wynne Arboleda (Finals) 7.2 ppg, 22% 3pts (5/23), 3.7rpg, 4.5apg, 2.3 spg (Semis) 9.3 ppg,28%3pts (7/25), 3.8rpg, 5.7apg, 1.7spg (Conf) 9.6 ppg, 31% 3pts (55/179), 3.9 rpg, 4.5 apg, 1.7 spg
    1. 5th overall in the conf. in assists, 2nd in steals (behind Reyes’ 2.7)

    2. 4th among locals this conference in assists, 2nd in steals (behind Reyes’ 2.7)
    3. Was voted to the All-Defensive Team for the 2nd straight season
    4. Had 3 steals in Game 6 to up his career total to 500 which netted for himself his very 1st career achievement award in the PBA
    5. Is only the 18th player in league history to achieve the feat and 1st player after 3 years (or since Chris Jackson did so in 2005).
  • BARANGAY GINEBRA
    • Mark Caguioa (Finals) 16.2 ppg, 35% 3pts (8/23), 4.0 rpg, 2.7 apg (Semis) 23.0 ppg, 26.3% 3pts (5/19), 2.5 rpg, 1.8 apg (Qfinals) 24.5 ppg, 50% 3pts (4/8), 4.0 rpg, 2.0 apg,1.5 spg (Conf) 21.4 ppg, 33% 3pts (44/135), 4.0 rpg, 2.5 apg

      1. 3rd overall in the conference in scoring, No. 1 among locals

      2. 1 of only 2 locals tops in their teams in scoring, the other being James Yap
      3. Will most likley finish the season No. 2 among locals in scoring as he needs to score 72 pts. here in Game 7 to claim league scoring honors among locals this season and overtake Purefoods’ James Yap (21.32 ppg)
    • Chris Alexander (Finals) 20.3 ppg, 60% FG, 19.2 rpg, 2.2 apg, 4.5 bpg (Semis) 15.5 ppg, 65% FG, 17.5 rpg, 2.3 apg, 4.0 bpg (Qfinals) 19.0 ppg, 56.5% FG, 14.5 rpg, 1.0 apg, 2.0 bpg (Conf) 19.5 ppg, 58% FG, 20.2 rpg, 2.1 apg, 3.7 bpg
      1. No. 1 overall in in the conference in rebounding, FG%, shotblocks and minutes played (41.9)

      2. Has the most no. of double-doubles this conference with 24 and has actually had a double-double or triple double in every game
    • Jayjay Helterbrand (Finals) 8.0 ppg, 5% 3pts (1/19), 5.0 rpg, 7.0 apg (Semis) 18.3 ppg, 41.2% 3pts (14/34), 3.8 rpg, 8.0 apg (Qfinals) 16.5ppg, 33.3%3pts (4/12), 5.0 rpg, 4.5apg, 1.5spg (Conf) 18.4 ppg, 37.9%3pts (78/206), 4.2rpg, 6.3apg, 0.9spg
      1. Missed Games 3 to 6 to rest a hurting hamstring he suffered in Game 2 last Aug. 8 which means he now has had almost 2 weeks of rest.

      2. No. 1 overall in the conference in assists, 8th in 3pt shooting
    • Ronald Tubid (Finals, 3 g) 7.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 0.7 apg, 1.0 spg (Elims) 10.8 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 1.5 apg (Conf) 10.7 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 1.5 apg – Returned to action in Game 4 after missing 9 games due to a dislocated left ankle suffered in their game vs. Alaska at the end of the elims last July 6
    • Junthy Valenzuela (Finals) 7.5 ppg, 1/15 3pts, 3.2 rpg, 1.5 apg, 1.3 spg (Semis) 9.3 ppg, 33.3% 3pts(4/12),6.0rpg, 1.0apg, 1.8 spg (Qfinals) 11.5 ppg, 41.7% 3pts (5/12), 5.5 rpg, 1.5 apg (Conf) 8.6 ppg, 21% 3pts (19/89), 3.9 rpg, 2.2 apg, 1.0 spg

    Finals featuring the 2 teams tied for the best records at the Big Dome this conference.

    • Araneta Coliseum records –

    • Air21 This conference 13-7 tied for best record w/ Kings
      1. Last conference 2-5 2nd worse

      2. Last season 17-13 (3rd best behind the identical 23-14 slates of Alaska and Brgy. Ginebra)
    • Brgy. Ginebra This conference 13-7 tied for best record w/ Express
      1. Last conference 4-3 tied for 3rd-best

      2. Tied with Talk ‘N Text behind Sta. Lucia (13-7) and Purefoods (11-7) Last season 23-14 tied for best record with Alaska
    • Air21 has won 9 of its last 13 games at the Araneta Coliseum dating back to the elims, its only losses in that stretch to the Kings in Games 1, 4 & 6 of this series and to Magnolia 104-102 last July 27 in Games 4 of their best-of-7 semis.
    • That loss to the Beverage Masters ended a 7-game win streak at the Big Dome dating back to the elims.
    • Barangay Ginebra’s Game 3 loss ended a 7-game winning streak at the Araneta Coliseum dating back to the elims but has still won 11 of its last 13 there, its only other loss in that stretch to Red Bull 86-82 last June 1.

    PREVIOUS NOTES ON THIS SERIES:

  • Game 5 recap: Fri., Aug. 15 ’08 (Cuneta Astrodome)
    • Final score — Air21 76, Barangay Ginebra 73

    • In the lowest scoring and most defensively-fought game of the series, the Express held the Kings scoreless in the last 2:50 to have the last laugh in defense after both team had battled through 3 deadlocks and 2 lead changes in the 4th qtr. alone.
    • Air21 held Barangay Ginebra to a 0-for-4 shooting and forced the Kings into 3 turnovers in that final 2:50.
    • The 3 turnovers happened in the final 74 seconds of the game where they were able to put just 1 shot from the field.
    • Best Player of the Game – Arwind Santos 12 pts, 6 rebs, 2 asts, 2 stls. and 1 blk.
    • Santos was responsible for 2 of those 3 turnovers which Barangay Ginebra committed in the final 1:14 and for holding Mark Caguioa to just 7 pts. (3-for-13 shooting from the field), his lowest in the series, after averaging 21.3 in the 1st 4 games.
    • It was actually a come-from-behind win for Air21 which trailed the Kings by as much as 12 pts. in the 1st qtr.
    • 4 others scored in double figures for the Express led by the 15 apiece from Steven Thomas and Gary David.
    • Chris Alexander’s 21 pts. and 21 rebs. led Barangay Ginebra, which actually shot better from the field than Air21 – 36.5% to 35.9% — and had fewer turnovers – 16 to 21 – but were outscored in fastbreaks 8-4, from the 15-foot-line 13-8 and from 2nd chance pts. 13-6.
    • The 73 was actually the lowest output of the Kings this conference while the Express’ 76 was their lowest since May 28, 2006 in an 87-73 loss to Coca-Cola in a playoff for an outright quarterfinal berth.
    • It was the lowest scoring game in the conference and in a PBA title series since San Miguel Beer defeated Talk ‘N Text 74-66 in Game 1 of the 2005 Fiesta Conference Finals.
    • It was the 1st time in more than 5 years Air21 was held to below 80 pts. in back-to-back games, or since the 2003 All-Filipino Cup elims.
  • Game 4 recap: Wed., Aug. 13 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum)
    • Final score — Barangay Ginebra 90, Air21 77

    • Co-Best Players of the Game –
    • Chris Pacana 14 pts, 3 rebs, 1 stl. in 17 mins. off the bench
    • Averaged only 6.0 pts. in the 1st 3 games of the series
    • Paul Artadi 13 pts, 2/5 3pts, 5 rebs, 2 asts.
    • Averaged only 6.7 pts, 1.0 rebs, and 2.3 asts in the 1st 3 games of the series
    • Prior to this conference, shot a combined woeful 4-of-40 from 3-point range in an 8-conference span. He is already 10-for-22 (46%) this conference, inclusive if 6-for-11 (55%) in the Finals.
    • Both players more than made up for Jay-Jay Helterbrand’s conference averages of 17.8 pts. and 4.2 rebs.
    • After Air21 battled back from deficits of as much as 9 pts. in the 1st half to tie the score at 43-all 10 seconds into the 3rd period, Barangay Ginebra went on a 17-6 run to take the lead for good.
    • The Kings went on to lead by as much as 15 in the 4th period.
    • Chris Alexander’s 22 pts. led 4 double-digit scorers for Barangay Ginebra while adding 18 rebs, 3 asts and 2 blks.
    • Only 3 players scored in double figures for Air21 led by Steven Thomas’ 19
    • The Express’ 77 pts. was its lowest output over the last 2 seasons
    • Prior to Game 4, the Express were the only team which have scored at least 80 points in every game since last season
    • It was actually Air21’s lowest output since an 87-73 loss to Coca-Cola on May 28 ’06 in a playoff for outright q’finals berth
    • The 77 ends the Express’ string of 93 straight games of at least 80 pts. in a game since May 31, 2006.
  • Game 3 recap: Sun., Aug. 10 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum)
    • Final score — Air21 97, Barangay Ginebra 87

    • KG Canaleta, who was averaged only 4.5 pts. in the 1st 2 games of the series and was a combined 1-of-8 from 3-point range, went 4-for-4 from beyond the arc in a breakaway 17-5 run by the Express in the 4th qtr. which turned a 70-71 deficit into a commanding 87-76 lead which the Kings were never able to recover from.
    • Canaleta finished with 17 pts., built around a 5-for-5 shooting from 3-point country, and was 1 of 5 players in double figures for Air21.
    • It was actually a come-from-behind win for Air21 which trailed Barangay Ginebra by as much as 10 pts. in the 2nd period.
    • Best Player of the Game – Gary David 25 pts, 2/8 3pts, 2 stls, 1 ast
    • Aside from David and Canaleta, 3 others scored in double figures for the Express led by import Steven Thomas who had his 5th 20-20 game in the conference (20 pts, 20 rebs) which came with 3 asts and 1 blk and Wynne Arboleda who fell 1 ast. shy of his what would have been his 1st career triple double in the PBA. Arboleda tallied 12 pts, 10 rebs, 9 asts, 4 stls. and 1 blk.
    • Playing minus Jay-Jay Helterbrand, who rested a hurting hamstring, Barangay Ginebra was led by the 21 pts. of Mark Caguioa. But he was only 0-for-6 from 3pt range and had 2 pts. in the 4th qtr. when the Express broke away.
    • The loss also put to naught a triple double from Kings import Chris Alexander who tallied 14 pts, 17 rebs. and 11 shotblocks.
    • The 11 blks was the most in a game since Jerry Codinera had the same number – the all-time most among locals — for Purefoods in a 126-94 win over San Miguel Beer on Oct. 3, 1989.
    • It was also only the 2nd triple double game this season after Thomas who had 24, pts., 21 rebs. and 10 asts. in a 95-93 OT win over Sta. Lucia last June 1.
    • Air21 outrebounded Barangay Ginebra 63-49 and also outscored the Kings 13-2 in fastbreaks.
  • Game 2 recap: Fri., Aug. 8 ’08 (Ynares Center)
    • Final score — Air21 124, Barangay Ginebra 90

    • The Express took the lead for good with an 8-0 run in the 1st period which broke the game’s 2nd and final deadlock at 12-all and turned into a 20-12 lead then broke the game wide open with a 20-0 run in a 6 and a half minute stretch spanning the 2nd and 3rd period.
    • Air21, which outscored the Kings in every qtr., went on to lead by as many 36 pts. – at 122-86 — with 65 ticks left in the game.
    • Best Player of the Game – Arwind Santos 20 pts, 9 rebs, 2 asts, 1 stl, 1 blk, no turnover in 29 mins. of action.
    • 5 others scored in double figures for the Express led by Gary David who matched Santos’ 20.
    • Only 3 players scored in double figures for Barangay Ginebra led by the 29 of Mark Caguioa.
    • After being named Best Import prior to the start of the game, the Kings’ import Chris Alexander came up with his worst game in the conference to the tune of 10 pts. and 10 rebs. although he had 4 asts, 4 blks. and 1 stl.
    • Also after being named Best Player of the Conference prior to the start of the game, Barangay Ginebra’s Jay-Jay Helterbrand finished with only 4 pts., his lowest output in the last in the last 2 years, after limping out of the game at the 7:01 mark of the 3rd qtr. with a hamstring injury.
    • The 34-point win was the biggest winning margin in Air21 franchise history.
    • The Express’ previous biggest win was only by 24, a 109-85 decision over Sta. Lucia on Oct. 24, 2003 in a Reinforced Conference elims game at the Makati Coliseum.
    • Air21’s pivotal 20-0 run that broke the game wide open was also the biggest run in franchise history.
    • It was the worst defeat by the Kings since Game 3 of the 2004-05 Philippine Cup Finals against Talk ‘N Text on Feb. 4, 2005 when they lost 102-66.
    • It was also the worst defeat in the head coaching career of Barangay Ginebra’s Jong Uichico, his previous worst loss only by 26 which happened in Game 3 of the 2005 Fiesta Conference Finals against Talk ‘N Text on July 6, 2005 when his then San Miguel Beer team lost 103-77.
    • It was the most lopsided PBA Finals game since Game 4 of last season’s Philippine Cup title series when Barangay Ginebra, already coached by Uichico, massacred the Chot Reyes-mentored Beermen 146-111.
  • Game 1 recap: Wed., Aug. 6 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum)
    • Final score — Barangay Ginebra 105, Air21 96

    • The Kings bucked a slow start wherein they were outscored by the Express 10-0 in the 1st 3 mins. of the game and 12-2 after the 1st 4.
    • But Barangay Ginebra, starring Junthy Valenzuela, got its act together and slowly got back in the game before Paul Artadi sparked a 16-0 run spanning a 4-minute stretch of the 1st and 2nd period, allowing the Kings to take the lead for good, 31-16.
    • Barangay Ginebra went on to lead by as much as 20.
    • Air21 rallied in the 4th and cut the lead down to 6, the last at 90-96 with 2:07 left in the game but Chris Alexander and Jay-Jay Helterbrand conspired to bring the lead back up to double figures.
    • Best Player of the Game – Mark Caguioa 22 pts, 7 rebs, 4 asts.
    • Caguioa was actually 1 of 5 players who scored in double figures for Barangay Ginebra which shot 50% from the field compared to only 38% for the Express.
    • The Kings also outrebounded Air21 63-51 which led to a 22-12 edge in fastbreak pts., 16-2 in the 1st half alone.
    • Ranidel de Ocampo led the Express with his 21 pts. while Steven Thomas and Arwind Santos finished with a double-double each, combining for 40 pts. and 30 rebs.
    • Barangay Ginebra’s bench outscored its Air21 counterparts 31-5, led by a personal conference-high 12 pts. from Eric Menk who early in the 3rd period became the 59th member of the league’s 5,000 point club.
    • Both teams are meeting in the PBA Finals for the 1st time.
    • This is actually the 1st meeting for both teams in either a best-of-3, best-of-5 and best-of-7 series.
    • This is the 2nd straight conference and 3rd time overall both teams are colliding in the playoffs, the 1st 2 happening in the:
      • 2007-07 Philippine Cup wildcard playoffs – Air21 eliminated Barangay Ginebra 119-110 as Wynne Arboleda erupted for a career-high 32 pts. built around a 7-for-13 shooting from 3-point range and which came with 10 rebs., 4 asts and 1 stl. last Jan. 18.

      • 2006 Philippine Cup wildcard playoffs – Last game for both teams in the single round-robin format turned out to be a do-or-die game for the 8th and last quarterfinal slot which Barangay Ginebra in overtime, 118-114, on June 4, 2006 as Mark Caguioa exploded for a career-high 45 pts., 8 rebs., 4 asts and 1 stl while shooting 15 of 28 from the field inclusive of 4 of 8 from beyond the 3pt arc.
    • Caguioa’s highest output this conference was actually also against the Express, a 39-point game in a 97-92 win in Zamboanga City last May 24 in their 2nd meeting in the elims.
    • Both teams also battled each other for 3rd place in the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference which Air21 won 108-98 for its highest finish ever in a regular conference before this conference.
    • In last season’s Fiesta Conference, these 2 teams also were eliminated by separate opponents in the best-of-3 quarterfinals – Air21 by Talk ‘N Text and Barangay Ginebra by San Miguel Beer.
    • Both teams are entering the Finals with identical overall win-loss records this conference of 16-8.
    • 1st meeting this conference: Wed, May 7 ’08 (Araneta Coliseum)
    • Final score – Air21 97, Barangay Ginebra 88
    • The Express outscored the Kings 15-6 in the final 7:09 of the game, breaking out of the game’s 12th and last deadlock.
    • Both teams actually also battled through 23 lead changes.
    • Barangay Ginebra had 4 turnovers and went 2-of-7 from the field in that final 7:09.
    • Best Player of the Game – Steve Thomas 37 pts, 10/18 FGs, 17/22 FTs, 22 rebs, 1 ast, 1 stl
    • It was the 1st-ever 30-20 game of the season.
    • 3 locals scored in double figures for Air21 led by the 15 pf Wynne Arboleda who added 7 rebs, 3 ast and 1 stl.
    • The Express won despite shooting only 37% from the field compared to Barangay Ginebra’s 43%.
    • Air21 had 9 less turnovers than the Kings.
    • Only 3 players scored in double figures for the Kings with Jayjay Helterbrand tallying 19 pts. which came with 5 asts and 4 rebs and Alexander and Mark Caguioa adding 18 and 16, respectively, with the former also coming up with a game-high 24 rebounds.
    • Barangay Ginebra lost despite despite the return of Eric Menk (8 pts, 6 rebs, 1 ast, 1 stl and 1 blk in 18 mins.) after missing their last 5 games because of an injury.
    • 2nd meeting this conference: Sat., May 24 ’07 (Zamboanga City)
    • Final score – Brgy. Ginebra 97, Air21 92
    • Best Player of the Game – Mark Caguioa 39 pts., 5 rebs, 3 asts.
    • The 39 is the most in a game by a local in this conference and was 1 pt. shy of the season-high recorded by Bitoy Omolon in Sta. Lucia’s 123-106 win over Air21 in the previous Philippine Cup elims last Jan. 13.
    • Caguioa already had 33 after 3 qtrs., matching that early his conference-high and 3 short of the most after 3 qtrs. this conference registered by former Purefoods import Darius Rice en route to 56 pts. in the Giants 127-126 OT win over Magnolia last Apr. 2.
    • The 39 also enabled Caguioa to jack up his scoring average to 25.6 ppg, moving him to No. 1 overall in the conference rankings at that time.
    • This is believed to be the 1st time a local player to lead an import-laced conference in scoring.
    • Caguioa’s efforts also enabled him to be named Player of the Week by the PBA Press Corps for the period May 19 to 25.
    • Led by Caguioa, the Kings had led by as much as 9 pts. in the qtr. and by 86-79 with 7:30 to go in the game but the stubborn Express rallied to within a pt. at 90-91 with 2:16 remaining.
    • But defense, which resulted in 25 turnovers for Air21 (compared to only 11 for the Kings), along with clutch baskets from Ronald Tubid, Billy Mamaril and Junthy Valenzuela and free-throw shooting woes by Air21 enabled Barangay Ginebra to secure the win in the end.
    • 3 other players scored in double figures with Tubid tallying 16, import Chris Alexander 13 (which came with 13 rebs, 6 asts, 4 blks and 2 stls) and Jay-Jay Helterbrand 10 (with 7 asts and 5 rebs).
    • The Kings outscored the Express 21-11 in fastbreak pts. despite being outrebounded 62-49 and despite missing 14 free throws.
    • Steve Thomas led the Express to the tune of 28 pts. and 23 rebs. which came with 4 asts.
    • Arboleda led 3 local double-digit scorers for Air21 with his 16 built around a 5-for-11 shooting from 3pt country while adding 6 rebs and 3 asts.
    • It was the Express’ 1st loss in 7 games in the conference and 1st in its last 12 dating back to the Philippine Cup in games where they held their opponents to less than 100 pts. in a game.
    • Game between the 2nd winningest among the active coaches and 1 of 3 still without a PBA title under their belts.

    Air21 is in its 1st PBA Finals appearance since entering the PBA in 2002.

    • The Express have finally made it to the title series in their 6th seasons and 15th conference in the league.

    • Prior to this conference, Air21 is 1 of 2 teams still without a stint in a PBA Finals and still with a title, the other team being Welcoat.
    • Road to the Finals
    • Elims: No. 1, 12-6 record (5-4 record in 1st round, 7-2 in 2nd), made it to best-of-7 semis outright
    • Longest win streak 4 (last 4 games)
    • Longest losing streak 2; lost back-to-back games just once
    • Semis: Defeated Magnolia, 4-2
    • Won Games 2 (103-102), 3 (82-78), 5 (92-82) and 6 (99-91)
    • Prior to this conference, the Express’ only other best-of-7 experience was its 4-2 loss to Purefoods in the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference semifinals
    • Last season’s Fiesta Conference: 6th (lost to Talk ‘N Text, 2-1, in best-of-3 quarterfinals)
    • Previous Philippine Cup: 7th (was eliminated by Coca-Cola in 2nd knockout stage of wildcard)
    • Homer Se is the only player at Air21 to have been a member of a PBA champion team which happened with Red Bull in the 2002 Commissioner’s Cup.
    • PBA Finals appearances (before this conference):
      • Se – 2 (with Red Bull: ’02 Commissioner’s Cup vs. Talk ‘N Text & ’04 Fiesta Conference vs. Brgy. Ginebra)

      • Billones – 2 (with Purefoods in the 05-06 Fiesta Conference vs. Red Bull and with Talk ‘N Text vs. Alaska in last season’s Fiesta Conference)
      • Espinas 1 (with San Miguel Beer: last season’s Philippine Cup vs. Brgy. Ginebra)
    • 1st timers – Arboleda, Canaleta, David, Santos, de Ocampo, Sotto, rookies Intal, Kramer and Cruz
    • Air21 import Steven Thomas has also said he has yet to win a championship anywhere in the world. Previous notes on Thomas:
      • Nationality American

      • Listed height 6-8
      • Weight 235 lbs
      • Date of birth March 14, 1981
      • Place of birth Carrollton, Georgia
      • College Middle Tennessee State (2004-05)
      • Averaged 10.5ppg while shooting 48.5% FG and 7.5rpg in 24 games during his senior year
      • Previous stint before PBA Continental Basketball Association
      • Was the CBA’s leading rebounder
      • Other overseas stints Poland, Italy, Dominican Republic, China
    • Air21 coach Bo Perasol, who took over the Express starting in the 2005-06 Fiesta Conference, is 1 of only 3 coaches among the active PBA head coaches without a title, the other 2 being Coca-Cola’s Binky Favis and Welcoat’s Caloy Garcia.
    • Among the 3, Perasol is actually the only 1 to have been in the Final 4 which he has already done twice and the only 1 to steer his team to a PBA Finals.
    • Updated career win-loss record: 75-78 (0.490)
    • Highest win pct. in Air21 franchise history, among 5 coaches who have handled the Express (after Derick Pumaren, Bonnie Garcia, Joe Lipa and Bong Ramos)

    Ginebra

    • Finals appearances including this one: 17th overall (9th in a conference with imports)

    • Most recent – 2006-07 Philippine Cup (def. San Miguel Beer 4-2, after losig 1st 2 games of the series)
    • PBA championships: 7
      1. 2006-07 Philippine Cup (Uichico)

      2. 2004-05 Philippine Cup (Tanquingcen)
      3. 2004 Fiesta Conference (Tanquingcen)
      4. 1997 Commissioner’s Cup (Jaworski)
      5. 1991 First Conference (Jaworski)
      6. 1988 All-Filipino Conference (Jaworski)
      7. 1986 Open Conference (Jaworski)
    • Last season’s Fiesta Conference: 5th (lost to San Miguel Beer, 2-1, in best-of-3 quarterfinals)
    • Previous Philippine Cup: 9th (was eliminated by Air21 in 1st knockout stage of wildcard)
      Road to the Finals

      • Elims: No. 3, 10-8 record

      • Finished in a tie with Coca-Cola and Magnolia but earned No. 3 seed and outright quarterfinal berth because of a superior quotient
      • Actually started the elims with 0-5 record
      • Best-of-3 Quarterfinals: Swept Sta. Lucia 2-0
      • Best-of-7-Semifinals: Swept Red Bull 4-0
      • It was the 1st best-of-7 sweep in the last 16 years and only the 3rd feat in league history after:
      • 1992 Third Conference Finals Swift 4, Seven-Up 0
      • 1985 Reinforced Conference Finals NCC 4, Manila Beer 0

      PBA Finals appearances (including this one):

      • Caguioa, Helterbrand – 5 (all with Brgy. Ginebra since ’01); part of last 3 Ginebra championships

      • Menk – 6 (last 5 with Ginebra, 1 with Tanduay in ’99 All-Filipino); also part of last 3 championships of Kings
      • Was actually Best Player of the Conference in the Kings’ 2004 Fiesta and 2004-05 Philippine Cup title conquests where he eventually won season MVP honors
      • Valenzuela – 6, 1st Finals with Ginebra; 1st 5 Finals stints and 3 titles with Red Bull)
      • Salvacion – 4 (last 4 Finals with Kings and last 3 titles)
      • Artadi – 3 (1st 2 with 1 title with Purefoods during the 2005-06 season)
      • Reavis – 6 (2nd with Kings after last season’s Phil. Cup; 1st 4 with Coca-Cola from 2002 to 2003)
      • Mamaril – 2 (after last season’s Phil. Cup)
      • Crisano – 3 (1st 2 with Ginebra in 2001 All-Filipino vs. SMB and with Talk ‘N Text in 2002 Comm. Cup vs. Red BUll)
      • Pablo – 10 ; previous 6 with Talk ‘N Text (01 to 07 with 1 title) and 4 with Shell (96 to 99 with 2 titles)
    • 1st timers – Pacana, rookie Escalona
    • Previous notes on Barangay Ginebra import Chris Alexander:
      • Listed height 7-1

      • Date of birth July 20, 1980
      • Place of birth Chicago, Illinois
      • Nationality Spanish (according to www.eurobasket.com)
      • Weight 260 lbs
      • College Iowa St. (2002-03)
      • Previous stint before PBA NBDL semifinals (Sioux Falls)
      • Other overseas stints China, Puerto Rico, Lebanon
      • Others tried out for Bulls in ’04, Pacers ’06;
      • has also played in the ABA, CBA, USBL
      • Played in the CBA All-Star Games in 2006 and 2007
      • Was part of the Yakima Sun Kings champion squad in 2007
  • Junthy now finally a Gin King

    Wednesday, April 16th, 2008

    When it looked like the deal wouldn’t materialize, the Brgy. Ginebra Kings reached an agreement with the Red Bull Barakos to acquire spitfire Junthy Valenzuela in exchange for multiple draft picks. The Gin Kings originally offered shooter Sunday Salvacion for the crack Red Bull guard but in the end, the Barakos settled for a 2009 2nd round and a 2010 1st round picks.  
    (more…)

    Shocking PBA trade: Villanueva to Purefoods, Pingris to Magnolia

    Thursday, March 27th, 2008

    pingris.pngIt’s a sad day to be a Purefoods fan. The TJ Giants have just traded the exciting Jean Marc Pingris to Magnolia for center Enrico Villanueva. As part of the deal, Magnolia will also received Chester Tolomia from Coca-Cola. The Tigers will receive shooter Mark Macapagal (and a future draft pick) from Brgy. Ginebra while the Gin Kings got the bull-strong Willie Wilson from Magnolia.

    The trade was spurred by the sidelining of Purefoods center Rommel Adducul. The 6-6 ex-San Sebastian standout is currently undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatment after having been diagnosed with nasopharynx cancer. The timetable for his return is still indefinite and will depend on how well he responds to treatment.
    (more…)

    Ginebra needs some spark to its game

    Wednesday, March 26th, 2008

    brgy-ginebra_kings.gifIf the Tigers were the biggest surprise last conference, the Brgy. Ginebra Kings were the biggest disappointment. Bad luck hounded the team as star players Mark Caguioa and Eric Menk suffered various injuries and missed several games. Worse, all-star forward Rudy Hatfield decided not to renew his contract with the team. The result was disastrous.

    The team failed to make it past the quarters. Trade rumors abound during the offseason. There were talks that Caguioa would be traded for Welcoat’s Joe Devance but nothing concrete has been made to substantiate this rumor. In my opinion, it would be catastrophic for the Gin Kings to trade its franchise player. Despite the injuries, there is no question who the heart and soul of Ginebra is. Nothing against Devance but Caguioa has already proven before that he can carry the team to the promised land.
    (more…)

    The imports are coming!

    Tuesday, March 11th, 2008

    Wesley Wilson
    Can Wesley Wilson carry the Realtors to a coveted Grand Slam?

    With only a few weeks to go prior to the start of the 2008 PBA Fiesta Cup (League opens on March 29 in Panabo City, Davao del Norte), teams are in frantic search to acquire highly-talented imports overseas to beef up their lineup. The height restrictions for foreign reinforcements have been scrapped to give way to mastodons such as ex-Red Bull and now Miami Heat cager 7’0″ Earl Barron to play in the league. Three years ago when the same system was implemented, Talk N Text’s 6’8″ Jerald Honeycutt stood tall against the giants and copped the PBA Best Import trophy, while leading the Phonepals to a second place finish.

    In addition, the league also gave a concession to the Welcoat Dragons and the Coca-Cola Tigers (for finishing 9th and 10th at the end of the classification) to bring in another import standing not lower than 6’1″.
    (more…)


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