By Jerome Lagunzad
To the victors go all the spoils.
Barangay Ginebra import Justine Brownlee plans to take a much-needed vacation in Batangas and, possibly, Hawaii.
Rookie wingman Kevin Ferrer hopes to bring his family to Hong Kong after his breakthrough PBA championship.
Ace big man Greg Slaughter is bent on rewarding himself, more than anyone else, after making a sustained recovery from an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury.
Finals MVP LA Tenorio wants to put most of his latest windfall in building a new house. Backup forward Raymond Aguilar, another first-time pro league champion, is eager to try his luck in the world of business – primarily on trucking.
For veteran guard Jay-Jay Helterbrand who has already called it quits after a decorated 17-year career?
“I have no job now so I’m just gonna save it for the future,” he told Bulletin-Tempo in between laughs on Monday night during the Gin Kings’ victory party at the San Miguel Corp. main headquarters in Ortigas Center in Mandaluyong City.
“I just want to enjoy (more) time with my kids and take them to shopping probably,” he added, still sounding in high spirits despite being three days removed from Ginebra’s successful title defense of the PBA Governors Cup crown at the expense of Meralco in a thrilling finals duel that went the full seven-game route.
A one-time league MVP winner who has collected his sixth PBA title in nine trips to the finals after being a direct hire of Ginebra in 2000, Helterbrand, 41, disclosed that he has already sat down with SMC top honcho Ramon S. Ang and SMC sports director Alfrancis Chua to help him plan his immediate future better.
“I talked to the (Ginebra team) management and they told me they’re gonna help me in terms of some business related to Ginebra and San Miguel. I just wanna thank Boss RSA and coach Al for really looking out for their players,” said the former Kentucky State standout who formed the popular backcourt tandem dubbed as “The Fast and the Furious” with high-scoring guard Mark Caguioa.
The 7-foot Slaughter, who missed the Gin Kings’ title quest last year due to an ACL injury, admitted he’s just glad to help Helterbrand walk away from the spot on top.
“Now that JJ is retiring, I’m just really happy that we were able to get this for him,” said the former Ateneo star center, who was earlier adjudged as the Best Player of the Conference in the season-ending tourney.
“I keep saying it’s great but I cant really describe the feeling. It’s just unreal. I finally made it after a lot of work and sacrifices especially with this special group of guys.”
His personal work, however, is far from done, added Slaughter. “I’m looking to invest a lot of that (bonus) to myself. I’m still working on my game. I’m still having rehab and I feel I’m not still 100 percent in terms of my conditioning. I’m just gonna keep on working hard,” he said.
Meanwhile, the 6-foot-3 Ferrer, who has already put up a health and fitness gym center in Makati City, added he also wants to buy a new house and lot.
“‘Yun na rin talaga ang hinahanap ko ngayon. Gusto ko nasa gitna lang rin ng training center namin tapos game venues. Tsaka dapat mura rin,” he said, tongue in cheek.