MANILA, Philippines – Ginebra import Justin Brownlee does not think that his contest of Alaska counterpart Cory Jefferson's potential game-winning jump shot merited a foul call, though he admits there was "some contact" between them.
Brownlee had come to Ginebra's rescue against the Aces in their PBA Commissioner's Cup game, completing a three-point play to put the Gin Kings on top, 103-102, with just 7.2 seconds left after erasing a six-point deficit.
Alaska had the chance to retake the lead, but Jefferson's jump shot – which came as Brownlee was defending him – barely grazed the rim. The Aces retained possession, but JVee Casio misfired on a triple at the buzzer, allowing Ginebra to escape with the one-point win.
The Alaska bench was outraged at the perceived no-call, but Brownlee maintained that he did not foul Jefferson in that crucial sequence.
"Me, personally, I don't think it was a foul," said the Ginebra import, who exploded for 37 points in the game. "I think it was some contact, but I think we both created that by our momentum, coming towards each other."
"I really feel that I hit the ball," he added.
"Plays like that go through the whole game where it can be a foul or not be a foul so I just try not to worry about the referees. Just try to control what I can control," he further stressed.
Ginebra point guard LA Tenorio pointed out that even if Brownlee had fouled Jefferson, the referees also missed instances where the Aces should have been called for fouls as well.
"May foul din sa amin 'yung ibang possession," he said. "Pero the referee can only do so much."
"Kung may foul man 'yun, it's up to the Commissioner's Office to summon the referee," he added. "But on our side, sa amin, ganoon din eh, meron din naman kaming reklamo na ganoong foul."
[There were also fouls on us in other possessions, but the referee can only do so much. If that was a foul, then it's up to the Commissioner's Office to summon the referee. But on our side, we also have complaints about fouls.]
Tenorio noted that during Alaska's 25-8 run early in the fourth period, the Gin Kings felt as though some of the calls were going in the Aces' favor, but they could do nothing about it.
Ultimately, they "just have to play through it," he added.
Jefferson himself shrugged off the non-call, saying: "It just did not go our way."
The win over Alaska was Ginebra's fifth in a row, putting them at 5-1. Meanwhile, the Aces dropped their third straight game for a 4-3 win-loss record.
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