A PLAYER who epitomized Barangay Ginebra’s never-say-die spirit believes the team still has a lot of fight left in it despite the deficit it needs to hurdle in the PBA Philippine Cup Finals.
Ginebra great Bal David is not giving up on the Gin Kings even after they fell 1-3 behind two-time defending champion San Miguel in the best-of-seven series following Friday night’s 94-85 loss in Game Four at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“Kaya pa yan, apat namang panalo ang kailangan para mag-champion, e,” the 44-year-old playmaker shared to SPIN.ph as he watched the only team he played for as a pro from ringside of the Big Dome in the company of Senator Joel Villanueva and brother Rommel David.
David, a product of University of Santo Tomas, will forever be remembered in Ginebra lore for his game-winning shot at the buzzer of the team’s quarterfinals playoff against fancied Talk ‘N Text, 82-81, in one of the biggest upsets in the 42-year history of the league.
Seeded eighth, the Kings stunned the top-seeded Texters then led by massive rookie Asi Tualava, for a seat in the semifinals.
Although the team found itself in a deeper hole this time, David said anything is possible, even citing the case of the 1991 Ginebra team of former playing-coach Robert Jaworski, the acknowledged father of the league’s most popular franchise, which managed to overcome a similar 1-3 deficit to win the All-Filipino championship at the expense of Formula Shell.
“Diyan naman magaling ang Ginebra,” said the look-alike of actor-host Vhong Navarro.
To duplicate the feat of their predecessors, David stressed the Kings need to elevate their play way higher to pull the rug from under a team as talented as the Beermen.
“They have to double their effort,” he said.
“Medyo mahirap kasi San Miguel ang kalaban. Gutom pa yan, lalo na at Perpetual Trophy ang pinaglalabanan,” said David of the Beermen’s bid to win a third straight Philippine Cup championship.
One thing going for Ginebra, according to him, is having the most accomplished coach in PBA history on its side.
“Malaking bagay yun,” David pointed out. “And alam naman ni coach Tim (Cone) ang gagawin.”