Justin Brownlee has his sights set on an expected tough playoff journey despite an impressive triple-double performance that highlighted the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel’s 112-93 rout of also-ran TNT KaTropa in the 2018 Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup, Sunday night at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.
The resident import chalked up 31 points, 16 rebounds, and 11 assists on top of three steals and three blocks for a monster all-around game, as the Gin Kings finished the elimination round on top of the team standings with a 9-2 slate to further bolster their three-peat season-ending conference bid.
As amazing his triple-double was, though, the ever-humble Brownlee played it down just like always.
“It’s a great compliment to get a triple-double in the game, man,” the 30-year old import said.
“But I just had it going. I just stayed aggressive, trying to score and keeping my teammates involved. I came with a triple-double but it’s more of that we got the win against a pretty good team like TNT. We just sustained that energy and effort and I think that was the big difference.”
Brownlee and the Gin Kings were actually assured of the top spot regardless of the result against the KaTropa, but they still shot for the win for momentum purposes heading into the playoffs.
“We just wanna come out here and play our game. Just trying to get the win and prepare for the playoffs to keep us in the same rhythm like what we’re carrying out this whole conference.”
For Brownlee, his triple-double outing is already a thing of the past, as the more important matter now is their upcoming quarterfinal stint which just got even tougher with the pressure as the top seed.
“You come at number one, you will get a little complacent, and a little less hungry and teams you know – they’re gonna be gunning for you for sure. We know that,” said Brownlee, who averaged 31.82 points, 12.91 rebounds and 6.91 assists per game in the eliminations.
As the top seed, the twice-to-beat armed Ginebra are now shifting their focus on the seventh-seeded NLEX Road Warriors in the quarterfinals, which get going on Tuesday, still at the Big Dome.
No matter who is in front though, Brownlee said that it won’t be a walk in the park.
“Man, no matter who we’re playing. We know it’s gonna be tough. It’s the playoffs. We know that there’s no going to be easy routes,” he added.
“NLEX is a tough team and they got a really good import that can do multiple things in the court and we know we’ll get our hands full against them.”
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