With reports leaking that coach Tim Cone, the pro league’s all-time winning coach, is set to be named the new coach of Barangay Ginebra, Twitter-dom is abuzz with tweets from Star Hotshots and Gin Kings fans, alike.
On one hand, Star fans felt ‘unfair’ to lose their beloved coach to Ginebra, a team that has been without a championship for the last seven seasons despite being under seven different coaches in that same stretch.
But on the other, Ginebra fans are elated with the reported coaching change within the San Miguel Corp.-owned squads, hopeful that Cone’s winning touch can finally put an end to the long-suffering Kings.
From the ‘Twin Towers’ of Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar, to veteran guards like LA Tenorio, Mark Caguioa, Sol Mercado and high-flying Chris Ellis, the Kings are all stacked up.
But then again, Ginebra players will have to undergo a major adjustment, unlearning the things they acquired during coach Frankie Lim’s one-conference stint in the Governors Cup, before beginning to embrace again the ‘triangle offense’, a system that Cone used successfully, yielding 18 PBA titles across his name in the process.
We all know that just last season, Jeffrey Cariaso, a long-time understudy of Cone, left the Purefoods franchise to serve as Ginebra’s head coach during the Governors Cup.
He applied the same triangle system to the Kings, but with little success.
Some say Ginebra players felt restricted by the famed ‘triangle’ that was invented by former American coach Tex Winter.
But a complicated system like the ‘triangle’ isn’t easy to understand.
I remember Cariaso telling me that during the tailend of his PBA career, when he returned to play with Alaska, he still made some lapses from time to time, explaining that it takes constant practice and wholeheartedly embracing it to yield success.
So once Cone assumes the Ginebra coaching post, don’t expect immediate result.
Results come when, 1.) players play as a team, 2.) work in harmony and 3.) understand that what’s far more important is playing for the name in front of the jersey than the one that’s printed at the back.