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Freeman Cebu Sports

Milky

WRECKORDER - FGS Gujilde - The Freeman

After more than three decades, the Alaska Aces left the country’s premiere basketball league. While it lost the last game, it won the country’s lasting memory. It left an indelible mark more lingering than the indelible ink indicative of voting. 14 championships and a grand slam. Of course Sean Chambers was at the helm, the biggest chamber among the league’s more important imports.

While the wisdom of importation demands scrutiny, great Filipino players proved they could raise the level of the game within the context of a vertically-challenged race. The 5’7” Flying A stood taller and flew higher to almost land in the ultimate basketball league in the world. Johnny Abarrientos was the point guard who points to guard and guards the points.

Other great alumni include Jojo Lastimosa, Bong Alvarez, Bong Hawkins, Poch Juinio, Jeffrey Cariaso, Yoyoy Villamin, Kenneth Duremdes, LA Tenorio and Calvin Abueva. Lastimosa became known as Mr. Clutch, Alvarez as Mr. Excitement and Abueva as the Beast. But despite their moniker, they are known as the milkmen. And none of them emerged bigger than the franchise that produced them. The spring cannot rise above its source. Basic. But there are students who end up better than their teachers. They are not really the source, they just prepare the course.

Then there was coach Tim Cone and his much-vaunted Chicago Bulls-inspired triangle offense. Not as mysterious as the Bermuda triangle, more cunning than a love triangle, but not as anonymous as the drug triad. It penetrated even the impenetrable defense. From the outside. How can a territory be defended from a bombshell dropped from the sky and a weapon fired miles apart? Bloodymir Putin just showed the world how to murder a people in their own country.

Will Smack too, er Smith, awarded best actor by his peers with the worst behavior against his peer. He won the highest honor, but lost his sense of humor. Although the joke was offensive and insensitive, it did not warrant violent indignation. In full display for the world to see. But someone asks, would Will have done the same if it was not Chris Rock but The Rock at the other end? A day after he said sorry. Apology or afterthought? Neither. It is damage control.

Chris saw it coming but was stunned just the same. But he remained rock solid, opted not to press charges. He is winning in the press, and the Academy is the unwitting winner. Bored fans suddenly boarded the awards ceremony they snubbed in recent years.

Almost the end of an era for the Hollywood gala. But it is for the milkmen. If not for Barangay Ginebra, the most popular team is Alaska. But unreachable, many kids could not afford a glass of the famous milk. No matter its supremacy, some good things are not supposed to last. Otherwise they outlast their goodness. Excellence is temporary, just as fame is. Power too, otherwise it corrupts.

If the milkmen were to perfect their game, they can’t do it in their lifetime. Or while the franchise continues. The road to perfection is etched in the memory of their diehard fans. And it ends in history, the ultimate judge of all good or bad. Unless revised. By the bad.

JABAS

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