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ABL: Justin Brownlee is getting more Pinoy by the day

By Paul Lintag/abs-cbn.com – Justin Brownlee has transformed himself into a cult hero in the Philippines. After leading Brgy. Ginebra to two PBA championships, one following a dramatic championship-clinching buzzer beater, it would be a surprise if Brownlee is still not a cult hero in the Philippines. Everywhere he goes, Read more ».....»»

Category: newsSource: thepinoy thepinoyApr 16th, 2018

Superteams and superpowers: Basketball in 2017

The common theme in basketball as of late is rather simple: build yourself a superteam and see where it goes. 2017 saw a bunch of superteams take the court in all levels. Some panned out and some did not. Nevertheless, we live in a world of superteams. Either your favorite basketball team is one or it's not.   Warriors World For the 2016-2017 NBA Season, the 73-win Golden State Warriors, a superteam in their own right, added former Most Valuable Player Kevin Durant. Oh my goodness. The Dubs then proceeded to decimate the NBA, winning 67 games in the regular season. Golden State was even better in the playoffs, making a serious play for a postseason sweep before finishing with a 16-1 record and a second title in three seasons.   Seriously, it's a Warriors World that we live in Golden State's success has prompted other teams to try and create their own superteam. Houston snatched Chris Paul away from the Los Angeles Clippers and now the Rockets have a potent backcourt combo that also feature MVP contender James Harden. Oklahoma City completed two incredible trades that made Paul George and Carmelo Anthony members of the Thunder. Oh, OKC also has MVP winner Russell Westbrook running point. The Timberwolves also have something going on in Minnesota as Jimmy Butler joined Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins for a young and intriguing Big 3. The Eastern Conference landscape changed when Cleveland traded Kyrie Irving to Boston. The Celtics previously signed Gordon Hayward and all of a sudden, the winningest NBA franchise is in position to take over the East now and the forseeable future. Speaking of Cleveland, LeBron James is still with the Cavs and they've added Dwyane Wade of all people to join an aging but still scary superteam. The King started this whole superteam craze. Golden State just happened to perfect. We all live in a Warriors World.   Feer the Beer Over in the PBA, the Philippines' premier superteam is still pretty effective despite its stars each playing almost 40 minutes per game. A year removed from the "Beeracle Run," San Miguel made history by being only the second team to capture the Perpetual Trophy following three straight Philippine Cup titles. Then the Beermen, with the top-3 MVP candidates in June Mar Fajardo, Alex Cabagnot, and Chris Ross, plus Arwind Santos and Marcio Lassiter, ended the franchise's 16-year championship drought in the Commissioner's Cup. With the help of import Charles Rhodes of course. San Miguel had legitimate chances to win the Grand Slam of course, but the team ultimately fell short in the Governors' Cup. However, the Beermen did add 6'8" Fil-German Christian Standhardinger to the fold. Superteam.   Return of the Kings It was the perfect set up. Meralco earned the number 1 seed and was rolling all the way to the Finals. Meanwhile, the Gink Kings had to go through yet another emotional and heated series against rival TNT in the semifinals in order to have a chance to properly defend their title. The series before that? The Gin Kings had to end San Miguel's Grand Slam dreams. In the 2017 Governors' Cup Finals, Meralco was in perfect position to take The Rematch and allow the birth of a new PBA rivalry. After seven games, none of that happened and Ginebra won back-to-back titles by virtue of their quote unquote superteam. Greg Slaughter, Japeth Aguilar, Joe Devance, Justin Brownlee, LA Tenorio, Sol Mercado, and Scottie Thompson. How is that not a superteam? The Kangkong jokes sure died a slow death.   Systematic Mayhem Even in college hoops, superteams are the way to go. However, in the amatuers, you just have to recruit your way into building one. La Salle has perfected this method and the Green Archers are certainly the biggest --- and loudest and most aggressive ---- recruiters. The Taft superteam featuring Ben Mbala and co. got the Green Archers to two UAAP Finals and one championship. Only one championship because another superteam, quietly built in Katipunan with surgical, perhaps even robotic, precision, beat them this year. That's right, Big Bad Blue is once again on top of the UAAP as the Ateneo Blue Eagles scored a sensational, near-sweep of UAAP Season 80. Coach Tab Baldwin has a collection of incredible players that may not look like it on first glance but they do certainly qualify for superteam status. Dom't believe it? Maybe you will after they complete a five-peat. It could happen.   Sweep In the other collegiate league, two superteams dominated the NCAA for two separate periods in one season. First, Lyceum, the surprise superteam, made history by completing an 18-game sweep of the elimination round. However, the Pirates ran into the league's decade-old superteam in San Beda and the Red Lions ended up sweeping the Finals for yet another title. Most of the major characters from both squads will return for a new season and if a San Beda-Lyceum rematch does not happen, well, that's just disappointing isn't it?   OVERTIME 2017 also saw the rise and fall and rise of the Gilas Pilipinas program. Well sort of. The Philippines got off to a great star this year by absolutely dominating the SEABA Championships. Then, disaster struck in the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup when Gilas was embarassed by an old foe in South Korea. To end the year, the Philippine national team recovered, albeit in an ugly fashion, to take an early lead in the 2019 World Cup Asian Qualifiers. Gilas is more than capable of forming a Pinoy superteam that could compete, and even beat, the best of Asia. Let's hope we get that in 2018. Finally, 2017 also saw the Civil War PBA edition. It wasn't funny and it wasn't good. Fortunately, it seems that bright and peacuful days are ahead of our beloved league. Let's hope that's the case and let's just leave the bad memories behind this year. Time to move on and forget about that stuff. There are basketball games to be played.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 28th, 2017

ABL: Alab has no answer for 7-5 Deguara as Mono evens Finals series

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA - Sam Deguara has been, literally, the biggest difference in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball Finals. Fouling out in the endgame the last time around, the 7-foot-5 made sure to wreak havoc all game long in this one to tow Thailand’s Mono Vampire to a gritty 103-100 victory versus Alab Pilipinas on Wednesday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex. Deguara towered above all of Renaldo Balkman, Lo Domingo, and JR Alabanza to pound in 30 points, 20 rebounds, and five blocks and ultimately lifted the Thais into evening the best-of-five series at 1-1. It was also the reinforcement from Malta who made good on the basket and bonus that broke off a tied tally of 98-all and built up a 101-98 advantage in his team’s favor with 1:10 remaining. Balkman came right back with a short stab in the next possession, but that would be the last bucket the Filipinos would hit as Ray Parks Jr. and Justin Brownlee botched their attempts in the dying moments. Deguara had backup as American import Mike Singletary and Filipino import Paul Zamar scored 26 and 12 points, respectively. Filipino-American Jason Brickman also masterfully quarterbacked their offense and totaled 15 points, 11 assists, six rebounds, and two steals. Now, both momentum and homecourt advantage are with Mono as the series swings to Bangkok. Nonetheless, the Philippines will go all out to overcome the odds. Freshly-crowned Defensive Player of the Year Balkman showed the way for Alab with 37 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, two blocks, and two steals while newly-minted Local MVP Parks Jr. contributed 21 markers, eight boards, four dimes, three pilfers, and two rejections. Brownlee got off to a strong start with 11 points in the first quarter, but only wound up with 14. He also battled an apparent leg injury that forced him to the bench near the end of the third quarter. He missed majority of the final frame and was clearly not 100 percent when he launched his triple tries in the last 15 seconds that would have forced overtime. —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 25th, 2018

Even after a 46-point explosion, Brownlee counts on Alab teammates

MANILA, Philippines – Alab Pilipinas may have won Game 1 of the Asean Basketball League (ABL) Finals, but Justin Brownlee knows there is a lot of basketball left to be played. For now, he and the rest of Alab have their sights set on completing their home ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 25th, 2018

ABL: Alab eyeing 2-0 lead before Finals series swings to Thailand

Game on Wednesday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex 8:00 PM – Alab Pilipinas vs Mono Vampire Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman came to the rescue as Alab Pilipinas took Game 1 of the Finals in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. The Filipinos are hoping they wouldn’t need any more heroics as they try to push Mono Vampire to the brink on Wednesday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex in Laguna. The Philippines goes for a 2-0 lead while Thailand goes for an equalizer in the best-of-five series starting at 8:00 PM. As always, all of the action will be on S+A, S+A HD, and livestream. Brownlee’s heads-up play led to a Balkman putback that tied the tally at the end of regulation and the two continued to show the way for Alab in overtime as they ultimately prevailed, 143-130, in the series opener. Of course, the Filipinos have their sights set on another win, but want that win to come in a contest where they will be the ones setting the pace. Again about to go full-speed ahead, on the other hand, is Mono which will ride Sam Deguara and Mike Singletary and Filipino imports Jason Brickman and Paul Zamar in trying to get momentum just in time for when the series swings over to Bangkok. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 24th, 2018

ABL: Alab eyeing 2-0 lead before Finals series swings to Thailand

Game on Wednesday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex 8:00 PM – Alab Pilipinas vs Mono Vampire Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman came to the rescue as Alab Pilipinas took Game 1 of the Finals in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. The Filipinos are hoping they wouldn’t need any more heroics as they try to push Mono Vampire to the brink on Wednesday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex in Laguna. The Philippines goes for a 2-0 lead while Thailand goes for an equalizer in the best-of-five series starting at 8:00 PM. As always, all of the action will be on S+A, S+A HD, and livestream. Brownlee’s heads-up play led to a Balkman putback that tied the tally at the end of regulation and the two continued to show the way for Alab in overtime as they ultimately prevailed, 143-130, in the series opener. Of course, the Filipinos have their sights set on another win, but want that win to come in a contest where they will be the ones setting the pace. Again about to go full-speed ahead, on the other hand, is Mono which will ride Sam Deguara and Mike Singletary and Filipino imports Jason Brickman and Paul Zamar in trying to get momentum just in time for when the series swings over to Bangkok. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 24th, 2018

Paul Zamar proving full-blooded Filipinos can be world-class reinforcements

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA – Paul Zamar was playing with a black eye in Game 1 of the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League Finals. And yet, he turned in one of his best games of the season, scoring 25 points and helping Thailand’s Mono Vampire almost steal homecourt advantage. Zamar, Mono’s Asean Heritage import from the Philippines, had his right eye all black now, four days after it got up close and personal with the elbow of Chong Son Kung Fu slotman Justin Howard. “Ang liit kasi niya e,” the Mono guard jokes now. That didn’t stop him, or even slow him down, in Game 1 of the championship round, though. “Hindi ko iniinda. Pinoy tayo, hindi tayo aatras sa laban,” he said. Of course, the fact that he was playing in his native land and with his family, including coach Boycie Zamar, in attendance also motivated Zamar. “Inspired lang ako kasi nandito yung family ko. Tapos siyempre, nandito tayo sa Pilipinas,” he shared. He then continued, “Taga-rito ako e so itotodo ko.” The now 29-year-old has been pushing it to the limit all throughout the season and not just whenever he is in the Philippines. He, along with Filipino-American Jason Brickman, have formed a potent backcourt that has been a big part of Vampire’s surprising Finals run. For him, it’s all about living up to the Filipino fighting spirit. “Hindi ko lang nire-represent yung Mono at Thailand. Nire-represent ko rito yung lahat ng Pilipino,” he said. He then continued, “Pinapatunayan natin na pang-world class tayo. ‘Di lang tayo pang-Pilipinas, kaya nating mag-import sa ibang bansa as pure Filipino.” Well aware of that Filipino fighting spirit, however, Zamar also saw Alab Pilipinas erase a two-point lead in the last two four seconds of regulation and ultimately come away with a 143-130 overtime win in Game 1. “Never say die talaga e. (Ang) Pilipino, ‘di titigil hanggang mag-buzzer,” he said post-game, after he and the rest of Vampire now find themselves in a 0-1 hole in the best-of-five series. He then continued, “Pero siyempre, lesson learned na sa amin. Dapat matuto kaming mag-concentrate lalo na sa dying moments.” Nonetheless, the former University of the East star is relishing facing off with his kababayans for all the glory in the ABL. Asked about how it feels to playing in the Philippines again, he answered, “Ang sarap. Ito yung the best feeling ever.” And along with that, spending time with the family whom he hadn’t been with for almost half a year now. “May team policy kami na siyempre, dapat magkakasama kami sa hotel (in Alabang), pero during free time, umuuwi ako sa amin (sa Paranaque),” he shared. With his family still behind him and his kababayans still proud of him even though he’s at the opposing side, Zamar vowed to only be better as the series goes along. “I can still be better in the coming games. As a basketball player, hindi ka dapat makukuntento sa laro mo kasi you can always do better,” he said. He then continued, “And as a team, alam naming we came up short this game, but we can also do better. Of course, they’re (Alab) also gonna do better, may the best team win na lang.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 23rd, 2018

Alab Pilipinas just beat Mono Vampire at its own run-n-gun game

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA – Thailand’s Mono Vampire was four seconds away from stealing Game 1 of the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League Finals from home team Alab Pilipinas. Justin Brownlee, and Renaldo Balkman, were having none of it, however. Brownlee’s heads-up play coupled with Balkman’s hustle play extended the Finals showdown and in overtime, there was just no stopping the two of them. “We gotta win this game. We gotta win it. That was all that was in my head then,” the latter told reporters post-game. The Filipinos’ reinforcements combined for 18 points in the extra period, outscoring by nine points all of Vampire. “I just knew that if we’re going into overtime, it’s gonna be over,” Balkman said. The final score read, 143-130, in favor of the home team who now has a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five championship round. The incredible come-from behind win is nothing but a morale-booster as they prepare for Game 2 on Wednesday still at the same venue and then Game 3 on Saturday in Bangkok, Thailand. “We were down four with 19 seconds and everybody was walking out like we’ve lost the game. We gotta stick together during those times,” the Puerto Rican import said. He then continued, “But it’s all good cause we did and we came up with the win.” The Philippines’ 143 points were the most points scored in a single game in the eight-year history of the ABL. And with that, the defensive-minded team proved that, when needed, they can keep up with Vampire’s high-octane offense. “Credit to Mono, they came out and played extremely well. Credit to coach Douglas [Marty] for coming out with a great game plan,” head coach Jimmy Alapag shared. He then continued, “But we have a very resilient group and guys who continue to fight. That’s a staple for us this season.” Still, Alab hopes that they will be the ones setting the pace on Wednesday. “As a team, we just have to be much better defensively. Giving up 143 points won’t win us this series and I am confident we will be much better,” Alapag said. Balkman could only agree. “We gotta come back (in Game 2) and do a better job than we did tonight,” he remarked Game 2 and the rest of the 2017-2018 ABL Finals will still be LIVE and EXCLUSIVE on S+A, S+A HD, and livestream. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 23rd, 2018

Paul Zamar proving full-flooded Filipinos can be world-class reinforcements

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA – Paul Zamar was playing with a black eye in Game 1 of the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League Finals. And yet, he turned in one of his best games of the season, scoring 25 points and helping Thailand’s Mono Vampire almost steal homecourt advantage. Zamar, Mono’s Asean Heritage import from the Philippines, had his right eye all black now, four days after it got up close and personal with the elbow of Chong Son Kung Fu slotman Justin Howard. “Ang liit kasi niya e,” the Mono guard jokes now. That didn’t stop him, or even slow him down, in Game 1 of the championship round, though. “Hindi ko iniinda. Pinoy tayo, hindi tayo aatras sa laban,” he said. Of course, the fact that he was playing in his native land and with his family, including coach Boycie Zamar, in attendance also motivated Zamar. “Inspired lang ako kasi nandito yung family ko. Tapos siyempre, nandito tayo sa Pilipinas,” he shared. He then continued, “Taga-rito ako e so itotodo ko.” The now 29-year-old has been pushing it to the limit all throughout the season and not just whenever he is in the Philippines. He, along with Filipino-American Jason Brickman, have formed a potent backcourt that has been a big part of Vampire’s surprising Finals run. For him, it’s all about living up to the Filipino fighting spirit. “Hindi ko lang nire-represent yung Mono at Thailand. Nire-represent ko rito yung lahat ng Pilipino,” he said. He then continued, “Pinapatunayan natin na pang-world class tayo. ‘Di lang tayo pang-Pilipinas, kaya nating mag-import sa ibang bansa as pure Filipino.” Well aware of that Filipino fighting spirit, however, Zamar also saw Alab Pilipinas erase a two-point lead in the last two four seconds of regulation and ultimately come away with a 143-130 overtime win in Game 1. “Never say die talaga e. (Ang) Pilipino, ‘di titigil hanggang mag-buzzer,” he said post-game, after he and the rest of Vampire now find themselves in a 0-1 hole in the best-of-five series. He then continued, “Pero siyempre, lesson learned na sa amin. Dapat matuto kaming mag-concentrate lalo na sa dying moments.” Nonetheless, the former University of the East star is relishing facing off with his kababayans for all the glory in the ABL. Asked about how it feels to playing in the Philippines again, he answered, “Ang sarap. Ito yung the best feeling ever.” And along with that, spending time with the family whom he hadn’t been with for almost half a year now. “May team policy kami na siyempre, dapat magkakasama kami sa hotel (in Alabang), pero during free time, umuuwi ako sa amin (sa Paranaque),” he shared. With his family still behind him and his kababayans still proud of him even though he’s at the opposing side, Zamar vowed to only be better as the series goes along. “I can still be better in the coming games. As a basketball player, hindi ka dapat makukuntento sa laro mo kasi you can always do better,” he said. He then continued, “And as a team, alam naming we came up short this game, but we can also do better. Of course, they’re (Alab) also gonna do better, may the best team win na lang.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 23rd, 2018

Brownlee s 46 propels Alab Pilipinas to 1-0 lead in ABL Finals

Justin Brownlee. Photo from ASEAN Basketball League Facebook STA. ROSA -- Justin Brownlee carried San Miguel Alab Pilipinas to a thrilling 143-130 overtime victory over Mono Vampire to draw first b.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsApr 23rd, 2018

ABL Finals: Brownlee never says die as Alab fights off Mono in Game 1

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA – Justin Brownlee missed a crucial free throw, but also made the heads-up play that kept the fire burning for Alab Pilipinas in regulation in Game 1 of the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League Finals. Brownlee’s intentionally botched free throw ended up as a putback for Renaldo Balkman and the two would just keep going in overtime as the Filipinos pulled off an incredible 143-130 come-from-behind victory versus Thailand’s Mono Vampire on Sunday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex. The two reinforcements didn’t stop battling no matter what and willed the Philippines a step closer to its first championship since 2013. They now lead the best-of-five series, 1-0. Brownlee dropped 10 of his 46 points in the extra period on top of a total of 11 rebounds and nine assists. His scoring output set the record for most points scored in a Finals game by a player. His biggest play, though, was an intentionally botched free throw. The Philippines was chasing down a two-point deficit with four ticks to go and Brownlee fished a foul that sent him to the line. Once there, he muffed his first free throw before making sure his second attempt just grazed enough of the rim. It did and it was again the American import who got the rebound. While his short stab didn’t go in, Balkman was there to clean it up and ultimately forced overtime. There was no stopping the Alab reinforcements in the extra period as they just turned it on, outscoring all of Mono, 18-9, by their lonesome. Brownlee was the star of the show, but his Puerto Rican running mate was not that far behind with 39 points and 15 rebounds of his own. Locals Ray Parks Jr. and Lo Domingo also added 27 and 14 points, respectively, to help the Filipinos overcome a four-point disadvantage with under 20 seconds remaining. They hope to stand at the winning end anew in Game 2 on Wednesday still at the same venue. Of course, all of the action will be on S+A, S+A HD, and sports.abs-cbn.com/livestream/abl. Conversely, Vampire is hopeful  for a different outcome. However, they are also hoping Mike Singletary could build on his 42-point outburst and Filipino reinforcement Paul Zamar could stay hot after pouring in 25 markers. BOX SCORES SAN MIGUEL ALAB PILIPINAS 143 — Brownlee 46, Balkman 39, Parks 27, Domingo 14, Raymundo 9, Javelona 8, Alabanza 0, Celiz 0, Hontiveros 0, Sumalinog 0, Urbiztondo 0. MONO VAMPIRE 130 — Singletary 42, Zamar 25, Deguara 21, Brickman 15, Apiromvilaichai 14, Chanthachon 7, Klahan 6, Boonyai 0, Khukhandin 0, Phuangla 0. QUARTER SCORES: 26-32, 59-58, 87-87, 121-121, 143-130. —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 22nd, 2018

Brownlee’s 46 propels Alab Pilipinas to 1-0 lead in ABL Finals

STA. ROSA --- Justin Brownlee carried San Miguel Alab Pilipinas to a thrilling 143-130 overtime victory over Mono Vampire to draw first blood in the best-of-five 2018 ASEAN Basketball League Finals Sunday at Sta. Rosa Multipurpose Complex here. The do-it-all forward set the new ABL Finals record with his 46 points, 10 of which came in the extra period where Alab Pilipinas blew the game wide open after rallying back late in regulation. With the home team staring at a 120-116 deficit in the last 19.3 seconds of the fourt, Brownlee showed his never say die spirit, first drilling a trey to cut the deficit to one with 15.1 on the clock. His foul led to a Michael Singletary split ...Keep on reading: Brownlee’s 46 propels Alab Pilipinas to 1-0 lead in ABL Finals.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 22nd, 2018

Brownlee drops 46, ties Balkman s scoring record in Alab s Game 1 win

STA. ROSA, Laguna – Justin Brownlee unleashed 46 points to power San Miguel Alab Pilipinas past Thailand's Mono Vampire in a high-scoring overtime thriller, 143-130, in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) finals at the Sta. Rosa Multi-purpose Complex, Sunday, April 22.  Brownlee tied the playoff scoring record owned by teammate Renaldo Balkman, who ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 22nd, 2018

Coach Jimmy finding his balance a big key to Alab s Finals run

San Miguel-Alab Pilipinas' turnaround in the ABL season can be mostly attributed to the arrival of imports Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman. However, those two can't win all the games for Alab. That's why as the season went on, head coach Jimmy Alapag slowly figured out how to balance his team, creating a rotation where all the needed players are on the floor at specific times. Now, Alab's fire is still burning and the team has the chance to be the first Philippine team to win the ABL title in five years. "As a player, confidence is such a valuable part of playing in this game and that’s one thing that I wanna make sure I encourage my guys that I told them, as we progress in the season, we will need everybody," Alapag said, talking about his improved rotation after advancing to the ABL Finals. "Even guys who early on, weren’t getting minutes. Like Pamboy (Raymundo), like Pao (Javelona), but again, we had some injuries. Josh (Urbiztondo) is still banged up, Rico (Maierhofer) is still out, we’re hopeful he’ll be back in the Finals. It’s a credit to these guys’ work ethic. Whether they’re playing, or they’re not playing, they come in every day, work hard, put in the time and the effort. It wasn’t surprising to see them come off the bench and ready to contribute," he added. But while Alab's local guys have started to get their groove on, Alapag acknowledges that his two outstanding imports have done their part in helping install a winning attitude to the team. And coach Jimmy is thankful. "If you guys remember back in the season, we were dead last. These guys [Brownlee and Balkman] showed up off the plane and got a big win against Malaysia. It really just kind of set us off. It just seemed like the whole environment of our team changed when you bring in two quality imports who are not just again good players, that’s the obvious part, but great people," Alapag said. "Being able to have the opportunity to go up against Balk and Jus, both with Gilas and my last year playing. To be finally on the same side with them, it’s been huge. I couldn’t be more thankful to having both the locals and Justin and Balk," he added.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 19th, 2018

San Miguel-Alab dethrones HK, gains finals berth

CITY OF SANTA ROSA, Laguna---San Miguel Alab Pilipinas coach Jimmy Alapag lost his final game as a pro almost two years ago in the most heartbreaking way to a team led by Justin Brownlee. Now working together at Alab, they have an opportunity to win a championship in the Asean Basketball League (ABL). With Alapag pushing all the right buttons and Brownlee continuing his superb play together with fellow import Renaldo Balkman, Alab clinched the first finals berth with a 79-72 victory over Hong Kong Eastern on Sunday night at City of Santa Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex. "It's funny because he hit the shot to beat our team in my final game," said Alapag, referring to Brownlee, who...Keep on reading: San Miguel-Alab dethrones HK, gains finals berth.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 17th, 2018

Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings upbeat minus Greg Slaughter, tap ex- Cavalier

Barangay Ginebra will wait awhile for Justin Brownlee and will still be without Greg Slaughter for a good part of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup elimination round but coach Tim Cone remains upbeat of their chances with fill-in import Shane Edwards......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 16th, 2018

Finals-bound Alab Pilipinas dethrones Hong Kong in emphatic sweep

STA. ROSA, LAGUNA – Alab Pilipinas is into its first-ever Finals now in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. And they are going there with their confidence as high as ever, having gone undefeated thus far in the playoffs. Renaldo Balkman yet again proved to be no match for neither Ryan Moss nor Christian Standhardinger, Justin Brownlee and Ray Parks Jr. were right there by his side, and the Filipinos blasted the crown off the heads of now-dethroned Hong Kong, 79-72, on Sunday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex. Coming off a league playoff record 46-point outburst in Game 1 of the semifinals series, the Puerto Rican reinforcement remained a force and pounded in 21 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, and three steals. Balkman was a mismatch inside and also had the thunderous throwdown that detonated the 16-5 burst that broke off a tied tally of 43-all and built up a 52-43 advantage in favor of the Philippines. The home team would hold on to the lead for the remainder of the game, even as Marcus Elliott and Christian Standhardinger kept coming and pulled Eastern to within 70-77 with 38 ticks to go. Brownlee’s free throws and a pair of defensive stops, however, ultimately boosted Alab to the best-of-five championship round. There, they try to continue streaking all the way to their first-ever title. Brownlee wound up with a team-high 22 points, 11 rebounds, four blocks, and three assists while Parks Jr. chipped in 13 markers, 13 boards, and five dimes. Pao Javelona also came up big with 11 points, eight rebounds, and four assists as starting point guard Josh Urbiztondo was still hobbled. Winners of seven straight, the Filipinos will face either top-seed Chong Son of China or resurgent Mono of Thailand in the Finals commencing next week. Elliott topped the scoring column for Hong Kong with 25 points. Filipino-German Standhardinger had a 15-point, 16-rebound double-double in his last game in the ABL before he takes his talents to San Miguel in the PBA. BOX SCORES SAN MIGUEL ALAB PILIPINAS 79 — Brownlee 22, Balkman 21, Parks 13, Javelona 11, Raymundo 6, Alabanza 4, Domingo 2, Hontiveros 0, Sumalinog 0, Urbiztondo 0. HONG KONG EASTERN 72 — Elliott 25, Standhardinger 16, Moss 15, Lamb 8, Lee 4, Lau 3, Tang 1, Xu 0. QUARTER SCORES: 16-16, 37-32, 60-49, 79-72. —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 15th, 2018

Import Shane Edwards rescues Ginebra in tune-up win over TNT

Edwards blows past Tyler for the go-ahead dunk, 99-98, with 27.5 ticks left. Ginebra crowd here at Upper Deck erupts. #PBA pic.twitter.com/5OdqCGRFos --- MG (@MarkGiongcoINQ) April 14, 2018 Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone was in a frown, his lips were curled and shook his head repeatedly for the most part of the Gin Kings' tune-up game against TNT on Saturday. Cone, however, still had a reason to smile about. The Kings played catchup nearly the entire second half before outplaying the KaTropa down the stretch to win, 100-98, before a packed crowd at Upper Deck gym. Shane Edwards, who is filling in for Justin Brownlee, scored five of Ginebra's last six points inside the f...Keep on reading: Import Shane Edwards rescues Ginebra in tune-up win over TNT.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 14th, 2018

Balkman’s 46-point outburst lifts Alab past HK Eastern in semis game 1

Renaldo Balkman got unleashed on the big stage as he powered Alab Pilipinas past Hong Kong Eastern, 98-94, to take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three ASEAN Basketball League semifinals Wednesday at Southorn Stadium. Balkman set an ABL playoff record of 46 points, one more than what Justin Howard had in 2017, while also tallying 14 boards, four assist, four steals, and two blocks to lead Alab over Hong Kong, a team they never beat in two occasions in the eliminations. Alab's first encounters against Hong Kong, though, did not feature the import combo of Balkman and Justin Brownlee, and that partnership made the difference this time for the Filipinos as the the two importsshowcased ...Keep on reading: Balkman’s 46-point outburst lifts Alab past HK Eastern in semis game 1.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 11th, 2018

Lo Domingo’s breakout reminds us that Alab is deepest team in ABL

HO CHI MINH, VIETNAM – Alab Pilipinas put away Saigon last Saturday at the CIS Arena, finishing off a quarterfinals sweep that sends them back into the Final Four. Facing the tough, tough Heat and their rowdy, rowdy crowd, the Filipinos needed to play their best to come out on top. They did just that as Renaldo Balkman and Justin Brownlee both did their thing, Ray Parks Jr. and Josh Urbiztondo provided support, and even Pao Javelona and Pamboy Raymundo delivered contributions of their own. The star of Game 2, though, was sixth man Lo Domingo who had 21 points, six rebounds, and three assists in 25 minutes of action – bar none, his best game in the season. Lawrence Domingo escapes his defender for the JAM! #ABL8Playoffs pic.twitter.com/EkhVNhLEfa — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) Abril 7, 2018 It was also his thunderous throwdown that ignited the 10-2 blast that boosted the Philippines ahead for good. Asked about it post-game, he answered, “That dunk, I was kind of really bouncy in warmups. I had the lane there and that gave me a chance to do it so I did.” The six-foot-five forward would only continue his strong play from there, outmuscling the likes of Maxie Esho, David Arnold, and Moses Morgan and having his way inside. For head coach Jimmy Alapag, Domingo’s breakout was yet another proof that hard work pays off. “He’s been great for us for a while now and it’s great to see a young kid come in and work hard every day. It’s great see him reap the rewards of his hard work,” he said. For the Filipino-American from New Mexico, his breakout was just him doing anything and everything to help his team win. “I was just being patient, knowing that my time is gonna come. It’s already come now that it’s the playoffs,” he said. He then continued, “I feel like I’ve been playing hard all year and this is just something that comes from playing hard. In the end, I’m just gonna do whatever my team needs me to do.” With Domingo, Balkman, Brownlee, Parks Jr., Urbiztondo, Javelona, and Raymundo all on-point, Alab is indeed proving Heat point guard Akeem Scott’s statement that “they have a deep bench and it’s hard to beat a team like that.” They are going to need to keep proving that if they are to go through defending champion Hong Kong in the semifinals and then a Finals battle up against whoever among top-seed Chong Son of China, upstart Mono of Thailand, or rival Singapore. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 8th, 2018

Alab Pilipinas finishes off q’finals sweep of fighting Saigon

HO CHI MINH, VIETNAM - Alab Pilipinas has just proven it can win pretty and it can win ugly in its quarterfinals conquest in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. The Filipinos used total team effort once more, only this time to power through a very physical challenge put up by home team Saigon, 96-85, on Saturday at the CIS Arena. This hardfought win, coupled with their Game 1 win where they came out on top in a high-scoring affair, sends them to the semifinals opposite defending champion Hong Kong. That best-of-three series starts on Wednesday and as always, will be on S+A and S+A HD. The two teams were all even at 40-all late in the second before a thunderous throwdown from Lo Domingo went back-to-back with a slam jam from Justin Brownlee in a 10-2 run for a 50-42 lead in favor of the Philippines early in the third. Both the advantage and the momentum would never leave their side for the remainder of the game. In the end, Domingo turned in the best game of the season with 21 points on top of six rebounds and three assists off the bench. Renaldo Balkman posted a 21-point, 12-rebound double-double while Brownlee also pounded in 18 markers and 13 boards. Pao Javelona and Ray Parks Jr. also added 11 and 10 points, respectively, as Alab continued to play its best basketball heading deeper into the season. For the Heat, Akeem Scott showed the way with 22 points, six rebounds, four assists, and four steals. BOX SCORES SAN MIGUEL ALAB PILIPINAS 96 — Balkman 21, Domingo 21, Brownlee 18, Javelona 11, Parks 10, Raymundo 6, Urbiztondo 6, Hontiveros 3, Celiz 0, Sumalinog 0. SAIGON HEAT 85 — Scott 22, Esho 20, Morgan 17, Arnold 14, S. Nguyen 6, Williams 6, H. Nguyen 0, To QT 0. QUARTER SCORES: 28-27, 46-42, 73-59, 96-85. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 7th, 2018