DESPITE getting knocked down by KIA behemoth Peter John Ramos late in the third quarter, Barangay Ginebra import Michael Dunigan had the last laugh in their first face-off on Friday.
The 6-8 Dunigan gave up around 30 pounds to the 275-pound KIA import, who the Ginebra import described as in the category of retired NBA great Shaquille O'Neal in terms of size and heft.
“He’s (Ramos) one of the biggest guys I’ve ever played against,” Dunigan gushed. “Of course, I’ve played against seven-footers before, but he’s more or less in Shaq’s status with his body because he’s heavy."
He felt the full weight of that frame when he was accidentally elbowed in the chin by the 7-3 Ramos in the second half, the impact sending him crashing to the floor.
The Ginebra import, however, got up from the 'knockdown' and had the last say as he scored 12 of his team-high 27 points in the final period to lead the Kings to a 100-92 victory.
Dunigan, who picked up his fourth foul early in the fourth period trying to hold his own against Ramos defensively, said he never saw the elbow coming, but was quick to put the incident behind him.
“I wouldn’t say he’s too strong, but holding him, he’s a hand load. He’s a good player offensively,” the 25-year-old former University of Oregon standout said. “The elbow, I didn’t see it coming because I got hit by it and I had whiplash falling on the ground. But that’s all part of the game.
“He apologized afterwards. No hard feelings once you step out of the hard wood.”