PBA: Brownlee congratulates Durham on 'well-deserved' Best Import award

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 16 2020 11:30 AM

Barangay Ginebra's Justin Brownlee defends Meralco's Allen Durham in Game 4 of the PBA Governors' Cup Finals. PBA Media Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra import Justin Brownlee offered his congratulations to Meralco counterpart Allen Durham, who once again copped the Bobby Parks Trophy in the PBA Governors' Cup.

Durham was recognized as the conference's Best Import on Wednesday night, ahead of Game 4 of the finals between Meralco and Ginebra. It was his third time to win the award, and once again, he beat Brownlee for the honor.

It was a close race: Durham compiled 1170 points, while Brownlee had 937. 

"Oh, he deserves it," Brownlee said of Durham, who also won the award in 2016 and 2017. "He's always here in this conference and playing at a high level."

"He's always making his team better and they always seem to be here in the finals or the semis," he added. "So he's definitely deserving of it. His number shows it and his effort as well."

Brownlee did get a measure of revenge: he put up 27 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 5 steals and 4 blocks to lead the Gin Kings to a 94-72 rout of Meralco in Game 4. 

With the win, they now have a 3-1 lead in the series and are just a game away from reclaiming the Governors' Cup title. 

Coach Tim Cone commended Brownlee for taking charge of the game, particularly in the second quarter, where he scored 15 points to help the Gin Kings pull away after a tight first frame.

"Justin's Justin," said Cone. "Even though he didn't win the Best Import award, he's still gonna go down as one of the greatest imports, at least in Ginebra history, maybe PBA history."

"So you know, those things aren't surprising when Justin does those kind of things — takes over a quarter or takes over a half and it's not surprising at all," he added.

This isn't to say that Brownlee felt slighted by missing out on the Best Import award, Cone noted. The coach said that their celebrated import has never been motivated by individual awards.

"He's about championships," Cone said of Brownlee, who did win the Best Import award in the 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup.

"That's what we love so much about him, is that he really cares about winning for the team, not for himself. He's really special that way," the coach said. 

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