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    Paul Lee cautions ecstatic Magnolia not to look too far ahead: 'Job ain't finished'

    Nov 18, 2018
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascano

    AS the euphoria of its victory over Barangay Ginebra died down, Paul Lee was quick to remind the Magnolia Hotshots that there’s an even bigger task awaiting them.

    A day after ousting the Kings, the Hotshots braced themselves for a throwback showdown with Alaska for the PBA Governors Cup championship after the Aces booked the second finals berth by eliminating the Meralco Bolts.

    Inasmuch as Magnolia had to survive Ginebra in a grueling series, the team has to do an even better job against Alaska in their best-of-seven encounter that kicks off on Dec. 5 at the Mall of Asia Arena.

    “Job ain’t finished pa rin. Kailangan makuha namin (crown), kung hindi sayang yung opportunity,” said the combo guard from University of the East.

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      “We beat the defending champion (Ginebra), pero hindi pa rin kami champion,” Lee added. “Kailangan pa rin naming talunin yung kabila.”

      It will be the first championship meeting between the two proud franchise since the 2009-2010 Philippine Cup when the Hotshots, then carrying the Purefoods banner, swept Alaska, 4-0, in the title series.

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      Magnolia also won its lone head-to-head encounter with Alaska this conference, 83-73, despite the 24-point and 25-rebound effort of Aces’ reinforcement Mike Harris, the leading contender for the Best Import award.

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      But it won’t be easy as what it appears on the surface, according to Lee.

      “Hindi ka naman mananalo ng championship basta-basta. Talagang paghihirapan mo yun,” said the Magnolia guard, who had to shrug off a knee injury to help the Hotshots edged the Kings in their Game Four victory, 112-108, at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.

      “Sinasabi lagi ni Kuya Ping(Marc Pingris) na kung gusto niyong manalo ng championship, kunin nyo. Kailangan paghirapan nyo.”

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      PHOTO: Jerome Ascano
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