Dillinger, RDO torn between Ginebra, KaTropa as finals opponent

MANILA, Philippines - Jared Dillinger and Ranidel de Ocampo share a lot of things. 

They had won championships together with the TNT KaTropa, they are now teammates for Meralco, and both hit big shots down the stretch that helped the Bolts complete their semis sweep of the Star Hotshots on Thursday, October 5.

But the two versatile forwards had differences of preference for whom they'd rather face between Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and TNT in the best-of-7 championship series.

Dillinger, who has been with Meralco since 2013, wants a rematch of last year’s finals against the Gin Kings since he was sidelined for the entirety of the series after suffering a hamstring injury deep in the playoffs.  

“I hope we play Ginebra, just because they beat us last year and I did not get a chance to go out there and help the team and now this year, I’m healthy. Wouldn’t want it any other way to play those guys and get a chance to get some revenge,” the Fil-Am forward said.

RDO, meanwhile, wants to face the KaTropa, a team he played with for 9 years before being dealt to the Bolts in a three-team trade just last month.

“Siyempre, matagal akong naglaro sa TNT, kahit papaano, maganda rin ‘yung may mangyari na, kasi kapag nagchachampionship minsan, Ginebra, San Miguel o Star, sana ngayon may TNT-Meralco, para history naman na maglaro sa finals siguro,” said De Ocampo. (I played for TNT in a long time. The usual championship games usually feature Ginebra, San Miguel or Star. At the very least, I hope there will be a TNT-Meralco matchup so history will be made in the finals.)

The Bolts have a week to prepare as Game 1 of the finals, which will be held next Friday, October 13, in Lucena.

“It’s gonna be so much fun. I can’t wait, I can’t wait,” Dillinger added. – Rappler.com

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.