By Argie Paul Candare
The TNT Tropang Giga ended a six-year title drought following a 94-79 win over Magnolia in Game 5 of the PBA Philippine Cup best-of-seven title series Friday at the Don Honorio Ventura State University Stadium in Bacolor, Pampanga.
Super rookie Mikey Williams led the Tropang Giga's charge with 24 points, highlighted by four triples to go with 4 assists and 4 steals.
Named as the MVP of the finals, Williams was ably backed by RR Pogoy, who tallied 19 points, while now 7-time champion Jayson Castro contributed 10 markers for the Tropang Giga, who last won a title in the 2015 Commissioner's Cup.
With the win, TNT won its eighth championship overall and sixth in the all-Filipino after previously winning in 2003, 2008-09, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13.
Coach Chot Reyes, on the other hand, clinched his eighth PBA title, and sixth in the Philippine Cup.
TNT set the tone of the match early at 21-14, which it padded to as much as a 45-23 spread after a lay-up by Kib Montalbo off an assist by veteran big Kelly Williams. The rookie Williams hit 10 points in the quarter.
Pogoy and company took over in the third as the Tropang Giga entered the final period with a 19-point spread, 72-53.
Smelling the crown, the Giga closed the conference strong, building the biggest lead of the game at 88-63.
Ian Sangalang led the Hotshots with 18 points, while BPC awardee Calvin Abueva made recorded 14 points.