JUSTIN Brownlee is eager to lead Barangay Ginebra in its Governors’ Cup title defense, so much so that he has completely removed red meat from his diet so he can keep up with fellow imports who are quicker than the ones he faced in the Commissioner’s Cup.
Abstaining from pork and beef prompted the Gin Kings’ do-it-all import to lose some weight after bulking up a bit in a midseason tournament where he was the shortest reinforcement at 6-5 while the most reached the height limit of 6-10.
Brownlee indeed looked trimmer in the team’s 96-87 loss to Alaska in their tune-up game on Thursday afternoon.
“I’m just trying to be healthier, man, and I knew this conference, I would have to maybe play outside a little bit more, so I just want to lose some weight, try to become more of a guard,” Brownlee said. “I had to change up my diet a little bit."
The 29-year-old American cager said he has actually cut pork for seven years already, and has removed beef more recently, sticking to chicken and fish for his protein needs.
“I’m feeling a little bit quicker, my body’s just feeling better,” Brownlee said. “I think for this conference, it’ll help me out a lot.”
“Last conference there were bigger guys, so I maybe had to be a little bit heavier and bigger, but now, there are going to be a lot of guys who not only play outside, but play inside as well, cut, can shoot a lot more and quicker, so I feel like I had to lose a little weight,” he added.
The return of Greg Slaughter will also enable Brownlee to slide down to his more natural positions after being forced to punch above his weight in the Commissioner’s Cup.
“I think it’s going to be a lot easy for us especially rebounding and scoring in the paint,” Brownlee said of the return of Slaughter. “I feel like that was one of our biggest things. We move the ball very well, but having a post presence, I think that was our biggest fault for last conference, especially with big imports.
“But with him (Slaughter) coming in this conference, I feel like he’s going to help us a lot,” Brownlee added after the Gin Kings fell short of a finals appearance in the Commissioner’s Cup. “Hopefully it’ll be different results this conference.”