Last night's Barangay Ginebra San Miguel win—over the twice-to-beat Alaska Aces, 108-97—set the stage for a semifinal showdown with the Star Hotshots aka Manila Clasico in the 2017 PBA Philippine Cup.
The sister teams, both of which have the biggest fanbases in the league, have been going at it since way back when Robert Jaworski and Ramon Fernandez were still playing, until the prime years of Mark Caguioa and James Yap.
And every time Star (Purefoods, B-Meg, San Mig Coffee) and Ginebra meet on the court, basketball aficionados can expect only the best from two of the PBA's most celebrated squads. From unforgettable rim-rattlers to heartbreaking buzzer-beaters, Manila Clasico always treats its fans to the finest plays that local hoops has to offer.
Honorable mention: imports who embodied the killer instinct of their Pinoy counterparts
With the likes of Chris Ellis, Rafi Reavis, Japeth Aguilar, and (occasionally) Marc Pingris, every Ginebra-Star matchup has the makings of a breathtaking dunk fest. Oh, we almost forgot that dude Justin Melton...
Both teams are known for parading a lineup of profilic shooting guards and stretch big men; don't be surprised if the series will look like a blazing shootout between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors.
Used to the deafening screams of packed arena crowds, players from Star and Ginebra have have been tailor-made for the final seconds of the game, in turn producing the most cold-blooded game-winners.
When it comes to individual performances though, one player from the Barangay noticeably picks ups his game whenever he's faced with their favorite antagonists.
Same thing with the Hotshots, which sees its own Scoring Apostle wax hot and show out every time he's in front of the consistently sold-out attendance.
Finally, Joe Devance may have changed teams in recent years to join coach Tim Cone, but expect him to bring the same kind of energy he's known for, whether he watches from the bench (following Sunday's injury) or suits up for Ginebra.
Seriously, we're not the only ones wishing for a Game 7.