GINEBRA coach Tim Cone admitted they saw it coming when Justin Brownlee went down with cramps down the stretch against Phoenix last Saturday, forcing the Gin Kings to finish with an all-Filipino lineup in the three-point loss in Davao.
The Gin Kings import’s unremarkable numbers – 12 points on 3-of-10 shooting, four boards, four assists in 29 minutes – were due to him suffering cramps early in the fourth quarter, coming out with still seven minutes and 36 seconds left, never to return.
“We got hurt when Justin couldn’t play the second half and he got his cramps,” Gin Kings coach Tim Cone told SPIN.ph after practice on Monday. “We should’ve handled that better. Prior to the game, I think we got a little lax on that from an organizational standpoint.”
“He’s had a history of it (cramps),” he added. “We should’ve been better prepared for it."
In his debut last July in the Governors’ Cup, Brownlee also played just 29 minutes as he likewise suffered from cramps, losing to Alaska by nine points at the Big Dome.
“Although there was some air-conditioning in the gym in Davao, it wasn’t very strong,” Cone admitted, referring to the University of Southeastern Philippines gym. “One thing Justin does, he perspires a lot. He loses a lot of fluids and he’s susceptible to that.
“And we just got to be better prepared for it as a training staff, myself, him, we got to make a better effort to get him prepared for games,” he added.
“Justin needs to stay on the floor and play better – and he will,” the champion coach continued.
Asked about his thoughts on their next game against GlobalPort on Wednesday, Cone would rather focus on his own team, although he remains wary of Terrence Romeo, who has been a thorn in the side of the Gin Kings in recent encounters.
“We got to take care of ourselves more than we got to take care of GlobalPort,” Cone said. “We got to get our game right, get ourselves moving forward. Obviously Terrence has really eaten has up the last couple of games we played them. We haven’t been able to defend him well especially down the stretch.
“But our primary thing right now is let’s just get great at what we do,” he added. “Right now, we’re not so great at what we do. We got to get better.”