Barangay Ginebra San Miguel successfully retained their Oppo PBA Governors’ Cup crown after topping the hard-fighting the Meralco Bolts, 101-96, in an epic Game Seven on Friday at Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
The Gin Kings won their second straight crown in the conference and 10th overall in front of 54,086 fans which set a new record for the most-watched game in PBA history.
LA Tenorio, who was named Finals MVP, had his best game of the series, scoring 26 points while hitting five triples. Justin Brownlee added 23 points and eight rebounds.
Ginebra asserted its might early in the game, and pulled away with a 52-32 lead in the second quarter thanks to a 15-0 run.
The Gin Kings maintained their cushion for the rest of the way as they made life hard for Meralco import Allen Durham, who still scored 26 points, 24 rebounds and nine assists in 48 minutes, with triple teams and shut down Bolts shooters.
But Ginebra became complacent as it missed free throws, committed turnovers and allowed easy baskets for Meralco.
The Bolts capitalized on that and threatened to make a run in the dying minutes, trimming its deficit to just four, 100-96, after a 7-0 run with 47 seconds left.
But time wasn’t enough to complete the turnaround.