DEFINITELY a huge bonus awaits San Miguel after bagging a historic third straight PBA Philippine Cup championship Sunday night against Barangay Ginebra before a roaring crowd of 20,217 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
And the windfall meant finally settling whatever financial obligation the Beermen had, so goes a running joke between Arwind Santos and Ronald Tubid as the team celebrated inside the team dugout following title-clinching 91-85 win in Game Five.
“Magbabayad ka (na), magbabayad ka (na),” Santos told Tubid in the din of the locker room celebration.
Asked what it’s all about, Santos said it’s really more of teasing Tubid about settling their financial obligations.
“Ji-noke ko lang si Ronald. Sabi ko lang kanino tayo magbabayad, may pera na tayo,” he said. “Yung lang yun.”
Netizens were quick to react when Santos was overheard saying those words to Tubid especially in the wake of his heated verbal tussle with Barangay Ginebra rookie Kevin Ferrer during Game Three of the best-of-seven title series.
Following the 99-88 win by the Beermen, an obviously infuriated Ferrer was vocal in the post-game interview about making the defending champion pay for all their antics against the Kings, especially the move of Chris Ross to shoot a three-pointer in the waning seconds of a match that was all but settled.
“Pagbabayaran nila kung ano man yung mga nagawa nila,” said the rookie forward out of University of Santo Tomas.
Santos stressed anything he said wasn’t a tirade directed at anyone, adding it was really more of a private joke between him and Tubid.
“Lokohan lang namin ni Ronald yun,” he said.
On this night when San Miguel became only the second team behind TnT Katropa to win the Jun Bernardino Perpetual Trophy, Santos though wasn’t about to mess things up.
The former league MVP was on target the entire Game Five as he sparked the Beermen’s fiery start by firing 11 of his team-high 21 points in the opening half to help the defending champion set the tempo until the end.
He finished with eight rebounds, two assists, two block shots, and was 8 of 11 from the field in 35 minutes of play as the ‘Spiderman’ finished a strong second to teammate Chris Ross in the race for the PBA Press Corps-Cignal Finals MVP award.
The 35-year-old Santos added the Beermen will always remain humble despite everything the team had achieved.
“Iilan lang naman yung puwedeng makakuha at makatikim ng mga ganitong katamis na tagumpay,” he said. “Kaya sana mapangalagaan namin ito sa puso at isipan namin, na sana huwag naming ilagay sa ulo, at sana i-share lang namin ito at ipagpasalamat sa Itaas.”