FOR Alvin Patrimonio, some things never change. Like, say, the physicality that Ginebra has been known for in the past.
That was in obvious display as the Gin Kings manhandled Patrimonio and Purefoods, 97-89, in their Return of Rivals reunion game witnessed by a crowd of 17,000 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.
Patrimonio wasn’t complaining but the level of physicality certainly brought back memories of the time the Hotdogs waged war with the Kings in an intense rivalry that hit its peak in the early nineties.
“Ang Ginebra game naman is physical. Nagulat kami,” admitted the four-time PBA MVP with a laugh following the so-called ‘Legends game.’
“Pero expect na pag may Part 2, mas makukuha na namin yung rhythm.”
Even though majority are retired from playing competitively, there were still instances of banging and trash talking between the two teams, with big men Noli Locsin and Richard Yee even getting on each other’s nerves at one point of the game.
But that has been the culture of the two champion franchises, according to Patrimonio.
“Ganun naman yung dalawang teams, parehong gustong manalo,” said the 52-year-old Patrimonio, who finished with six points, five rebounds, and an assist.
“Yung Ginebra yun ang style ng play nila kaya you really have to adjust.”
The now Magnolia Hotshots team manager however, isn’t taking anything away from Ginebra, which he admitted was the better team on this night.
“Maganda yung shooting nila at yung big men nila dinominate nila yung paint,” Patrimonio pointed out.
The Kings did shoot better from the field, going 42.4 percent (39-of-92) compared to Purefoods’ 39.6 percent (36-of-91).
They also had more rebounds, 64-58, with the trio of Locsin, Marlou Aquino, and Edward Joseph Feihl combining for 25 boards.