Tim Cone says Ginebra must be at very best to have shot at beating mighty SMB
Tim Cone was left to rue a 'real clunker' for Ginebra in Game One. Jaime Campos

IT’S certainly not the way Barangay Ginebra ever imagined losing the opener of a PBA title series.

Tim Cone admitted feeling ashamed by the way the Kings were blown away by defending champion San Miguel, 109-82, in Game One of the Philippine Cup Finals on Friday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

As per league chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III, the last time the Kings lost by 27 points or more was also against the Beermen in Game Four of last year’s Governors Cup semifinals, 101-72.

But that was the semis, and this is the finals.

“It was a real clunker last night. Certainly, it was embarrassing and frustrating,” said Cone the day after the 27-point rout. “Thankfully it was Game One and not Game Seven.”

[See Undaunted Cone says 'there's no pogi points whether you win by 40 or 30 points']

Cone again stressed how potent a team the two-time defending champion is, and the Kings should always be at their best if they are to beat the mighty Beermen.

“Our guys have to understand that we have to be at the very top of our game to have a chance to beat San Miguel,” he added. “Needless to say, we were far from it.”

Game Two of the best-of-seven series is on Sunday in Lucena City, and Cone doesn’t see the Kings playing the way they did the last time.

He said Ginebra will definitely try to bounce back and give San Miguel a good fight the rest of the way.

“As in life, it’s not how hard you get knocked down, it’s how you get back on your feet that counts,” said the champion coach.

“Truly, that was a difficult loss to handle, but if anything our guys have proven is that they are resilient and tough minded,” he added. “We’ll bounce back.”

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