CEBU CITY – As his storied career approaches its final chapter, Dondon Hontiveros is not discounting the possibility of becoming a coach someday.
Even after signing a one-year extension with Alaska, the ‘Cebuano Hotshot’ said he’s already looking forward to a coaching career once he’s through with playing.
Spin.ph was privileged to talk to the veteran wingman during the game between his alma mater, University of Cebu, and the University of San Jose-Recoletos during the opening of the 15th Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) men’s basketball tournament on Saturday.
Hontiveros related it was former Alaska coach Luigi Trillo who noticed his potential at becoming a coach someday.
“He made me share my experience with Alaska and D-League team Cebuana Lhuillier. He said that I’m able to communicate well with other players. May times daw kasi na parang may gusto siyang sabihin sa isang player pero most of the time, nauunahan ko na siya sa pagsabi,” quipped Hontiveros with a laugh.
The Alaska gunner admitted being quite proficient with the Xs and Os, a skill he learned from all the years of playing under some of the best coaches in the land.
“Si Coach Siot (Tanquincen), magaling talaga sa in-game adjustment. Si Coach Chot (Reyes) and si Coach Alex (Compton), they’re the best motivators,” he said.
If given the chance, Hontiveros said he wouldn’t hesitate to come back and coach in the Cesafi.
“It’s a different kind of fulfillment to go down to the kid’s level and start teaching them there. What I would definitely impart on them is that they must have this constant desire to improve. Dapat hindi talaga sila maging kuntento.
“They must also crave for competition against better players. Diyan mo lang malalaman kung handa ka na ba for the next level or not,” stressed the former King Webmaster.
Hontiveros though is aware there’s still some left in his tank and he’s not about to pass the chance using it to suit up for Gilas Pilipinas.
He said competing for a spot in the national team competing in the FIBA-Asia Men’s Championship later this year will give him the opportunity to soak in as many coaching philosophies as possibly as he can.
“I’m honored to be part of the Gilas pool. If I have a shot at making the team, then I’ll give it my best shot. It also gives me the chance to absorb different coaching philosophies,” said Hontiveros, expressing excitement at the chance to be mentored by the Gilas’ American head coach Tab Baldwin.