TALK 'N Text unloaded a barrage of three-pointers in the final period to wrap up a sweep of Rain or Shine in the PBA Philippine Cup Finals with a resounding 105-82 victory on Wednesday night and become only the second team in league history to win a hat-trick of all-Filipino titles.
Jared Dillinger made four three-pointers - one to beat the third-quarter buzzer and stop the momentum of a fiery Painters comeback from 16-points down, and three more to fuel the late breakaway that put an emphatic end to a best-of-seven series the Texters dominated from start to finish.
The blazing finish made the PLDT franchise the first team since the legendary Crispa Redmanizers in the eighties to win an all-Filipino championship three successive times - an outstanding achievement that allowed the Texters to keep the perpetual Jun Bernandino trophy permanently.
The championship also crowned a successful homecoming for coach Norman Black, who won a title on his return to the pro league just months after from leading Ateneo to a fifth successive UAAP championship.
"This championship means a lot to me maybe because I've been away for so long ... I’ve always wanted to go back to the PBA, the best league in the country, and I was just waiting for the right time,” said a beaming Black, who clinched his 11th PBA championship and first after his last one 10 years ago.
“I’m very, very happy with the victory. The players worked so hard this year. We pushed them a lot. Yet, that’s the beauty of this team. The players are all unselfish.”
Dillinger scored most of his 14 points in the Texters' murderous 28-13 finish that took the fight out of a Rain or Shine that bravely fought back to within 63-65 late in the third period.
The rest of the Tropang Texters soon joined the three-point shooting display – from Jimmy Alapag, Kelly Williams and Ranidel de Ocampo, who went on to clinch the Finals MVP trophy.
The 6-5 De Ocampo led the Texters in scoring with 19 points to go with 10 rebounds. The former St. Francis of Assisi College standout averaged 18 points, eight rebounds, and 3.5 assists in the championship series.
Williams and Ali Peek added 15 points apiece, while Larry Fonacier 13 and Alapag added 10 in a balanced scoring attack.
The Tropang Texters finished the series-closing Game Four with conference-highs in three-point shots (14) and assists (34) that powered the Manny V. Pangilinan-owned franchise to its fifth league title in three years.
Talk ‘N Text 105 - De Ocampo 19, Williams 15, Peek 15, Dillinger 14, Fonacier 13, Alapag 10, Castro 6, Reyes 5, Carey 4, Gamalinda 2, Aban 2, Raymundo 0, Alvarez 0, Ferriols 0
Rain or Shine 82 - Rodriguez 16, Cruz 13, Arana 11, Chan 9, Lee 7, Belga 7, Quinahan 6, Tang 5, Tiu 4, Norwood 4, Matias 0, Ibanes 0
Quarterscores: 29-15, 53-46, 70-63, 105-82