The Meralco Bolts have been very vocal about getting back at the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel as they vie once more for the 2017 Governor’s Cup title. But for Jared Dillinger, the best-of-seven series is about more than winning the coveted crown.
For him, this particular championship bout is all for his grandmother.
“In the beginning of the conference, I got word that my grandma is not gonna live too much longer,” admitted a straight-faced Dillinger on Tuesday afternoon, after the Finals’ press conference at Sambokojin in Eastwood, Quezon City. “She’s my grandma from my mother’s side.
“She’s residing in California now so the family is taking care of her, they’re taking her off her medication and everything and just kinda letting it be as it be.”
The Fil-American forward shared that he badly wanted to fly back to the States to visit his grandmother, but she told him not to, as she wants her grandson to fully set his sights on the season-ending conference.
“She just wants me to focus on the season,” he said. “You know, she promised me that as long as she has a single breath in her body, she’s gonna make sure to watch me in the Finals and that’s what’s really keeping me going.
“That’s where my inspiration is coming from.”
His grandmother, in Dillinger’s words, is “on her deathbed for sometime”. The five-time champ has seemingly accepted his grandmother’s fate, but he is hopeful that she can stay alive long enough to watch the title series.
“It’s just really all for her and she’s fighting for her dear life just to hear my voice and hear how I did and how I played and it all goes out to her. I wish we could start tomorrow so she could see it,” the 33-year-old shared.
“I don’t want her to miss anything. God forbid, if she passes away at anytime, I just want her to just see one game. It’s emotional and it’s all for her,” added the US-born Dillinger.
“Like any loss in the family, it’s tough. But it’s just the way life is, and I’m gonna try to give her something special before all ends well.”