It has been six years of title reluctance for the most popular basketball team in our country. That maybe short for the likes of the San Antonio Spurs of the NBA, which took seven long patient years before a podium finish carrying the most prestigious Larry O’ Brien trophy. Time span wise, seven is, of course, longer than six. Paradoxically, the Spurs could have been criticized the same way the skeptics do to Barangay Ginebra. It just ended up as another story due to several factors. These teams play for two different leagues, different environment, different culture, and a way more diverse format. Just bear with this comparison. We all know that with all present indications, the former will never be criticized severely. Hats off, Coach Pop!
Diverse format it is. Most basketball leagues hail a single champion for a season. Uniquely as it was, it is, and will always be– the PBA has three conferences for a season, giving three chances for a shot to a dugout party. Let’s get back to our hypothetical tale of the tape using simple mathematical operation and a little bit of common sense. The Spurs had seven years and seven chances before their efforts paid off. Ginebra? That’s six multiplied by three resulting to eighteen chances, dude! Well that is, ugh, devastating.
I’m on the perfect mood as of the moment. Perfect mood to write to keep my spirits up after tonight’s loss to NLEX. Ginebra was killed by the zone D, murdered by turnovers. But know what puzzled me most? It’s the fact that this game was just the Road Warriors’ second under a new coach. Everything was well executed especially on defense, leading to smooth-flowing offense on the other end. In depth analysis, I thought coach Boyet Fernandez really outsmarted coach Jeff. Don’t get me wrong, I am a no fan of banwagon remarks. I know he’ll get to make better adjustments.
I understand the pressure behind every player’s and coach’s back on the Ginebra team. I am aware that in every game, they mean business– they just fall short sometimes. I know we, the fans, share the same Championship thirst with them. I know, in time, everything will fall in its place. Everything is a work in progress, including the likes of these game losses, even their setbacks on chasing a title. Brighter side? We treat every single victory as sweet as the balloons falling with champagne bath. Proof? We went bananas after that rout on Kia giving us a 2-0 record going into tonight’s game. Every single W weighs a lot to us that the haters couldn’t even handle. Now, blame it on the drought. It’s a compliment. We learn to treasure, to endure, and to persevere in our own little ways.
We have been waiting for six years to rain. We have had five bench tacticians to seed the clouds. We seemed to explore all avenues. Perhaps due to heavy pressure, we tend to fast track our goal. Yes, I say WE. We, the passionate fans of Barangay Ginebra, carry a role on this team, too. We may not be running with them, we may not be giving the high fives and fist bumps on the literal sense, but in simple ways like this, I know we contribute to OUR quest for a Championship. We consist of different faces and personalities. Some tend to give up, even throw some harsh words. But at the end of the day, we all stick as one. Though this ever tiring struggle seems to be forever, we still have the best chant on land. “Ginebra! Ginebra! Ginebra!” We are one. We are family. It’s time. Let it rain. Blame it on the drought. Now, here we are. We won’t back down. Never say die!