Naturalized player Justin Brownlee showed no signs of slowing down in his first game back coming off a surgery to remove bone spurs on his foot.
So as CJ Perez, one of the last-minute inclusions in the Gilas Pilipinas team for the coming Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.
The two played a key role in Gilas’ tough 86-81 triumph against a crack LG Sakers team from the Korean Basketball League on Friday’s tune up game which was opened to the public at the Philsports Arena.
Brownlee, the beloved import of Barangay Ginebra, barely showed signs of discomfort in his first competitive game since after the surgery he underwent before the start of the FIBA World Cup.
He scored seven of his 19 points in the fourth period, allowing the Filipinos in closing out strong.
Perez, who just rejoined Gilas after playing for the team in the FIBA World Cup, immediately brought his scoring prowess to the team as he contributed eight points.
Several other players also came out with a solid performance — six-time Most Valuable Player June Mar Fajardo, Calvin Oftana and Scottie Thompson — who all ended up in double figures.
Fajardo jumpstarted Gilas’ good start by scoring eight of his 16 in the first period, Oftana knocked in seven straight points in the third that allowed Gilas to regain control and chipped in 13 markers on top of 11 boards and Thompson, who had a sub-par game in the FIBA World Cup, came out more ready this time and tallied 11.