2013 PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals Roundup: Game 3

Wala pa ring tatalo sa Alaska. That’s probably the new go-to line of every PBA fanboy right now. After all, it sums up just how awesome the Alaska Aces have been in their quest to be this season’s Commish Cup Champions.

Don Don Hontiveros has two thumbs up after
the Aces swept the Kings in the Finals.

In retrospect, it seems this really was meant for them. They lost just three games in the eliminations to finish as the #1 seed. They exorcised their demons by beating San Mig Coffee in the semifinals, and now they completed their quest by sweeping an embattled Ginebra squad. It's a storybook tale fit for a franchise that seemed to lose its luster after going through more downs than ups in the past few seasons.

With its last title way back in 2010 and legendary coach Tim Cone jumping ship, it sure looked like Alaska was on its way to irrelevance, but with new blood and renewed fervor, the franchise's glory days (last seen in the 90s) may yet see the light of day anew.

As for Ginebra, it had its own fairy tale to spin, but all that happened here was the Kings fighting like mad dogs only to see everything spin out of control in the fourth quarter. Down by just 2 in the payoff period after Chris Ellis's last basket, the Kings went cold and witnessed a mind-blowing (and title-clinching) 24-2 flurry by the Aces that left more than 23,000 paying patrons at the Big Dome wide-eyed. Now the Kings are sent back to the drawing board, tired and broken.

A new record for a PBA crowd was set at the
Araneta Coliseum!!!

Coach Luigi Trillo hit it on the head when he said, “We have built a good foundation for this team and our new additions were the pieces we needed. These are good guys, character guys.”

The happy Alaska head coach with
his happy kids!

Indeed there was no shortage of “character guys” and heroes for Alaska, and perhaps there was nobody bigger than rookie sensation Calvin Abueva. Abueva was snubbed in the Best Player of the Conference vote, but he let his game speak in Game 3. The former San Sebastian Stag finished with 22 points and 10 rebounds in a performance worthy of greatness (and ire, if you're a Ginebra fan). Best Player? Nah. How about Beast Payer.

Calvin Abueva showed everyone why he was the
BEAST Player of the Conference.

And how about the first ever recipient of the Bobby Parks Best Import of the Conference -- Rob Dozier? The former Memphis Tiger was dominant with 27 points, 20 points, 7 assists, and 6 blocks. Needless to say, he completely outplayed Ginebra's Vernon Macklin.

Rob Dozier is the very first recipient of the
Bobby Parks Best Import Award.

Also stepping up big were "The Boss" Sonny Thoss and former Gilas playmaker JV Casio. They were both the main sparks behind Alaska's series-ending run, scoring 18 and 13 markers respectively by game's end. Thoss, for his outstanding Finals performance, won the Finals MVP plum, while not a few people are probably relishing at the though of Casio maybe getting a late call-up to the Gilas squad.

Sonny Thoss was named Finals MVP!

And now we can all hum to that undying Alaska Milk jingle again…

Wala pa ring tatalo sa Alaska.

Game Recaps:
ALASKA over GINEBRA, 104-80
The Alaska Aces defeated Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 104-80, in Game Three to sweep the Commissioner’s Cup finals Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

Alaska used a furious fourth quarter run to end the game to win the 14th championship in franchise history.

“Wala pa ring tatalo sa Aces, wala pa ring tatalo sa Gatas Republik, wala pa ring tatalo sa Alaska!” exclaimed Alaska chief executive officer Wilfred Uytengsu after the match

Best Import winner Robert Dozier dominated with 27 points, 20 rebounds, seven assists, and six blocks to lead the way for the Aces. Calvin Abueva added 22 points and 10 rebounds while Sonny Thoss posted 13 points and 14 rebounds for Alaska, who dominated the boards, 64-50.

With Ginebra’s backs against the wall, the Gin Kings put up a tough fight through three quarters. The game was still close early in the fourth quarter, with Alaska leading by just two points, 80-78.

Then all hell broke loose.

Alaska unleashed a 24-2 run to end the game, capped by a three-pointer from third-string point guard Raphy Reyes, to close out the series.

Thoss won finals Most Valuable Player honors after averaging 14.5 points in the series while anchoring the Alaska defense.

LA Tenorio carried the fight for Ginebra with 18 points. But import Vernon Macklin once again struggled, posting a quiet 12 points on just eight shots.

ALA 104 - Dozier 27, Abueva 22, Casio 18, Thoss 13, Baguio 7, Jazul 6, Hontiveros 5, Reys 3, Espinas 2, Belasco 1, Ramos 0, Eman 0, Bugia 0, Laure 0, Dela Cruz 0.
GIN 80 - Tenorio 18, Ellis 14, Macklin 12, Caguioa 12, Helterbrand 11, Baracael 5, Raymundo 4, Urbiztondo 2, Mamaril 2, Taha 0, Labagala 0, Espiritu 0, Hatfield 0.
QS: 23-20, 44-48, 71-72, 104-80

Aces win!!! After a three-year drought, Alaska is back on top!!!

Jessica Mendoza spices things up at courtside.

LA Tenorio was named Best Player of the Conference
prior to the opening tip.

Source: Unless otherwise specified, game recaps were compressed and compiled from InterAKTV. (Writing credit to Rey Joble)

Images: Images are from InterAKTV and the PBA. (Photo credit to Paul Ryan Tan) 
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