ABL: Justin Brownlee dropped 27 points and he wasn’t even supposed to play

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Apr 28, 2018 08:08 PM
ABL: Brownlee dropped 27 and he wasn’t even supposed to play
Justin Brownlee was a game-time decision - and yet, fought through injury to help Alab Pilipinas move one win away from the ABL championship

BANGKOK, THAILAND – Three days after dropping Game 2 of the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League Finals at home, Alab Pilipinas bounced right back with a well-earned win on Mono Vampire’s soil.

Ray Parks Jr. scored 30 points, eight coming in the last three minutes; Renaldo Balkman remained a force with 24 points, 16 rebounds, seven assists, four steals, and two blocks; and Justin Brownlee posted his own 27-point, 12-rebound double-double despite not being 100 percent on Saturday at the Stadium 29 here.

“I’ve said a lot this season, but I’m just really proud of these guys. They’re been a resilient group throughout and tonight was just another opportunity to show that,” head coach Jimmy Alapag told reporters after the Filipinos moved one win away from the country’s first championship since 2013.

That resilience couldn’t be more evident than in Brownlee who was a game-time decision for this one because of the leg injury he suffered in Game 2.

Then, he was forced to the bench near the end of the third quarter and missed the majority of the final frame.

In Game 3, though, it didn’t look like he was injured at all. “Justin wasn’t 100 percent. I really don’t have any explanation to describe what type of player and person he is,” Alapag said.

As it turns out, the American reinforcement wasn’t even supposed to play so that he could nurse himself back to full strength. “Honestly, my plan wasn’t to play him, but he came up to me and said he was ready to go. I didn’t really have any intention to play him,” the Philippine mentor shared.

He then continued, “38 minutes later, he had 27 points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists.”

Looks like Brownlee has indeed gotten the heart of the Filipino – giving his best no matter what.

Of course, he also had help to do so. As Alapag put it, “I want to give credit to [conditioning] coach Chappy [Callanta]. They were really working on Justin non-stop the last 48 hours.”

In the end, Alab’s reinforcements have yet again proven why their team is on the brink of a title. “Talking about Balk and Justin, they are just two winners,” their head coach expressed.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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