Mendoza: Ginebra going all out in Game 6?

I am no longer surprised. Barangay Ginebra keeps beating Hong Kong’s Bay Area Dragons because it is what it is.

Ginebra has been the better team from the start, to begin with.

Did the Gin Kings not deal the Dragons their first crippling, ego-shattering defeat in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner’s Cup?

That was in the eliminations when the visitors were running roughshod on the opposition.

And wasn’t that win a bristling 18-point victory?

That wasn’t a fluke as the Kings continued slaying the Dragons three times in their next five encounters—the last one registered only last Sunday, when Ginebra pounded out a runaway 101-91 win over Hong Kong.

Ginebra fashioned that out before nearly 22,000 fans, which was the second biggest crowd at MOA Arena in Pasay City—another screaming statement of the Gin Kings’ obvious superiority over the Bay Area squad bent on spoiling the party for this cage-crazed nation of 111 million.

But Hong Kong’s championship posturing may have seen its last dance on Sunday as its bounce-back bid on Wednesday (Jan. 11) has become highly doubtful amid fears the decimated Dragons will continue to be that in Game 6: decimated.

With practically three of their starters led by import 6-foot-10 Andrew Nicholson out due to a swollen ankle in Game 5—only Kobey Lam and Hayden Blankley seemed healthy during Hong Kong’s Sunday loss —the injury-hit Dragons desperately need a miracle to force a deciding Game 7.

And that is like wanting to see Gilas emerge champion in the Fiba World Cup here in August: A manna from heaven.

Rumors are flying of a Nicholson appearance on Wednesday. But for that to happen, the Canadian dead shot would need a lot of painkillers/injections to keep his ankle behaving for 48 minutes.

But then again, even with Hong Kong showing up with a complete lineup in Game 6, Ginebra seems all set to wrap up the first-to-win-four series in six games—what with the massive momentum it had harvested with that emphatic Game 5 victory that took shape early on after Ginebra grabbed double-digit leads that went as large as 18 points.

With the smell of blood now wafting in the air, the Dragon dirge digresses on.