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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Dragons activate Powell in Game 6

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BARANGAY Ginebra San Miguel goes for the clincher in Game 6 of the Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup Finals series.

But Head Coach Tim Cone and the Gin Kings needed to tinker with the adjustments they already made after the Hong Kong Bay Area Dragons activated import Myles Powell hoping to extend the best-of-seven series to the limit.

“We had to make a right turn since we found out while at practice [Powell’s reactivation],” Cone told BusinessMirror on Tuesday. “But yes, we did have time to prepare a bit. Powell will certainly change the way they play and we will have to change our defense.”

Powell is one lethal piece for the Dragons. With averages of 37.3 points, 8.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists in eight games before being sidelined by a foot injury, he was a major force for the Hong Kong side that lost only twice in the eliminations.

He’ll be a guaranteed headache for Cone.

“We’re just going to adjust our defense and be ready for anything they [Dragons] bring,” said Cone, who’s going after his 25th crown in the league.

Import Justin Brownlee is again expected to play a yeoman’s job as Ginebra shoots for its 15th league crown.

Brownlee and Stanley Pringle, who finished with 37 points and 20 points in Game 5, respectively, are expected to provide another solid performance as well as Best Player of the Conference Scottie Thompson, Japeth Aguilar and Jamie Malonzo.

Cone is also hoping that veteran playmaker LA Tenorio—who is averaging 12.2 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists in the Finals—will be okay in Game 6 after suffering a groin injury in Game 5.

“LA [Tenorio] is key to what we do, especially in the playoffs because he’s our leader, ball handler, organizer, big shot guy and emotional leader, so we’re going to miss all those things if he doesn’t get a chance to play,” Cone said. “We’re hoping and praying he will play.”

Injuries are also a big concern for Dragons coach Brain Goorjian.

Playmaker Glen Yang suffered a minor ankle injury in Game 4—which the Dragons won even without prolific big man Andrew Nicholson, 94-86 to tie the series. Goorjian said that Yang “is okay to play 75-25 percent.”

“He wasn’t there in Game 5 and I missed him,” said Goorjian of Yang who’s averaging 11.5 points and 5.5 assists in the Finals.

Goorjian also heaved a sigh of relief after sweet-shooting and 6-foot-10 Hayden Blakeley would be available in Game 6 after hurting his ankle on Sunday night.

A victory by the Dragons will force a winner-take-all Game 7 that will be played Friday at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.

NorthPort, meanwhile, are in the process of acquiring 2021 top pick Joshua Munzon and Javi Gomez de Liaño from Terrafirma in exchange for Kevin Ferrer, Jesper Ayaay and a future second round draft pick.

Converge, on the other hand, got Jerrick Balanza from NorthPort for Allyn Bulanadi, who was then shipped to San Miguel Beer for Paul Zamar and a future second round draft pick. Josef Ramos

Read full article on BusinessMirror

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