Tim Cone: No finals series as 'strange' as San Miguel-Ginebra

MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra's Tim Cone has been coaching in the PBA for 29 years, but he has not quite seen a championship series like the 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup finals.

Cone only had the word "strange" to describe the best-of-7 affair that had been decided by an average of 30.3 points in its first 4 games after the Gin Kings knotted the series at 2-all with a 130-100 demolition of San Miguel

"I'm as shocked as everybody is over this series," the winningest PBA tactician with 20 titles to his name told reporters after Game 4. 

"It's been a strange series. I don't think I've ever seen one or been in one like this before."

So far, the finals duel has yet to have a game that has a winning margin lower than 25 points.

Ginebra ran away with the series opener behind a 28-point romp while the Beermen turned the tides with a 25-point win in Game 2 and a 38-point rout in Game 3.

For the 60-year-old tactician, it's what happens when two powerhouse squads collide. 

"[Y]ou got very, you know, two explosive teams, and if you allow one team to get momentum, it's really hard to break because they are that good," Cone said.

"And so it seems like the team that can grab momentum is the team that is able to keep it rolling so far."

While the win prevented the Gin Kings from getting buried in a 1-3 hole, Cone is still wary how the Beermen will respond.

"All it does is just scare me even more cause we've seen their fight coming out of the last time we did this."

The Gin Kings seek to move one win within the throne when they meet the Beermen in Game 5 on Sunday, August 5, at the Araneta Coliseum. 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.