Mark Caguioa’s veteran presence makes a difference in Game 1

Mark Caguioa showed that he can still deliver in PBA’s biggest stage even at this point of his career after posting 11 points in Barangay Ginebra San Miguel’s lopsided victory over San Miguel in Game 1 of the Commissioner’s Cup Finals.

While most of the attention was on import Justin Brownlee’s near-perfect shooting, Caguioa provided quality minutes in the first half by scoring nine in that stretch that helped pave the way for the Kings to seize control of the series opener.

“That lift he gave us in the second quarter was huge, and he’s always capable of that,” Ginebra coach Tim Cone said of Caguioa after Ginebra’s 127-99 win Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

“I’m never afraid to put Mark in the game because he’s always gonna come out and be aggressive. And he’s gonna come out and he’s gonna look for his shot, and he’s gonna make the defense play him. And those are the three great things to have coming off the bench.”

Caguioa is eyeing his seventh title in 12 finals appearance since turning pro in 2001.

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