PBA 44 review: Still the Best
Paul Lintag on Feb 12, 2020 03:23 PM
(Photo by Arvin Lim)
You thought the PBA's 43rd season was a long one?
Yeah, the PBA's 44th season had it beat.
The 2019 PBA season started at the Philippine Arena on January 13, 2019. It officially ended January 17, 2020 when Barangay Ginebra won the Governors' Cup Finals.
Ironically, the Gin Kings won the first and last games of the 2019 season.
Anyway, the point is the PBA's 44th season was a marathon. And before a new one starts, it's time to take a look at how all 12 teams fared in the past year.
Today, we look at the San Miguel Beermen.
STILL THE BEST
San Miguel Beer's end to 2019 wasn't the most ideal.
Three players, including former MVP Arwind Santos, were indefinitely suspended by the team for fighting during practice, a fight that also included import Dez Wells.
The Beermen limped to the playoffs, and were promptly bounced by Barangay Ginebra in the first round.
That loss to the Gin Kings ended San Miguel's Grand Slam hopes for the second time in three years. But the key to San Miguel's season is two words: Grand Slam.
The Beermen had the chance to capture a second franchise Grand Slam, a second, ultimately failed attempt in three years.
That means that San Miguel was the winner of the first two PBA titles in 2019.
In the Philippine Cup, the Beermen rolled to a fifth straight Finals and overcome a ton of adversity there.
On its way to a dramatic Game 7 win to secure a 5th straight All-Filipino crown, San Miguel went past a wild Spider-Man, a 2-3 series deficit, and a 17-point Magnolia lead in the second half of Game 7.
In the Commissioner's Cup, the Beermen didn't have it any easier.
San Miguel had to sneak its way into the playoffs as a no. 7 seed before taking down no. 2 Northport and no. 1 TNT for yet another title, it's 27th in franchise history.
Regardless of how bumpy the road was in 2019, one thing is for certain: San Miguel is still the best and the Beermen are accepting challengers.
San Miguel BEERMEN in the PBA's 44th season
Philippine Cup: 7-4 (5th place, won Finals)
Commissioner's Cup: 5-6 (tth place, won Finals)
Governors' Cup: 6-5 (5th place, lost in Quarterfinals)
Overall: 18 wins and 15 losses. Three playoff appearances, TWO CHAMPIONSHIPS.
June Mar Fajardo is out for the Philippine Cup, probably for the rest of the season, with a leg injury.
Fajardo is the driving force behind the latest San Miguel dynasty, the Beermen go where he takes them.
It's been like that for a good half decade now and how the Beermen respond without their best player will dictate how the season goes not just for them but for the rest of the league as well.
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