Another historic weekend for the Philippine NBA 2K scene is in the books as the NBA 2K20 Qualifier Finals was held last weekend at the SM Megamall Event Center, Ortigas Pasig. When all was said and done, it would be Jethro “UncleJ” Sombilla who would stand tall amongst the rest to be called NBA 2k20 Philippine Champion.
This year’s qualifier finals felt a lot like a changing of the guard as perennial powerhouses PBE| Philippe and PBE| Clark bowed out early in the top 8. The door would be open to crown a new NBA 2k20 Philippine Champion and Jude “ISC | JUDE” Veloso and Jethro “MGH| UncleJ” Sombilla would come busting through the competition to vie for the coveted title.
In Game 1 of the finals, JUDE’s Rockets led the early going by pushing the tempo against UncleJ’s Bucks. JUDE managed to contain Giannis Antetokoumpo in the first few quarters while piling on offense from the Rocket’s one-two punch of Harden and Westbrook. They’d play a little sloppy in the 2nd half though favoring the flashy alley-oop finish to plays and often ending up throwing the ball away. This allowed UncleJ’s Antetokoumpo to come alive and dominate the second half leading to the come from behind win.
The back and forth Game 2 between JUDE’s Lakers and UncleJ’s Clippers would be a tightly contested affair up until the very last seconds of 4th quarter. With 16 seconds left in the last frame, Paul George found himself open for the 3-pointer, giving Uncle J the 48-47 lead. On the other end, Lebron would immediately strike back, driving baseline for the right-handed layup taking the lead back 49-48. On the inbounds play off the timeout, UncleJ found Kawhii Leonard for the mid-range J, putting the Clips back up on top 50-49.
With 5 seconds remaining on the clock, Kyle Kuzma inbounds to a streaking Caldwell-Pope who dishes to Anthony Davis but gets his pass tipped. Davis manages to recover who then finds Kuzma on the wing for a huge three putting up the Lakers up by 2 with 0.7 remaining. On the other end, Paul George still managed to put it up but hits the back iron and rattles out. JUDE secures a third game clincher.
UncleJ’s Lakers would dominate JUDE’s Bucks through the majority of the Game 3 rubber match thanks to a spectacular performance by Lebron James. The biggest lead of the night ballooned to 10 points, but Lopez and Giannis would bully their way inside to claw back to within 4 halfway through the 4th. That would be as close as Jude would get though as the two-man game between James and Cadwell-Pope would deliver crucial offense down the stretch including two Caldwell-Pope treys and a Lebron kickout to KCP and passback to Lebron for the easy lay. UncleJ secures the victory with his Lakers 56-48 against JUDE’s Bucks.
With that spectacular final set, UncleJ becomes the NBA 2K20 Philippine Champion. Both UncleJ and JUDE will move on to represent the Philippines in the NBA 2K20 Asia tournament in March 2020.
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