JAPS Cuan is joining his older brother Mac at Alab Pilipinas as his assistant coach in the Asean Basketball League (ABL).
The former University of Santo Tomas point guard, who helped the Tigers capture the UAAP crown under head coach Pido Jarencio in 2006, will be part of Mac Cuan’s coaching staff in the regional basketball league. But the idea started as a joke, according to the elder Cuan, after he got the coaching gig.
“When I got the coaching job, he just congratulated me and said, ‘Kuya, kung ano man matutulong ko sayo, kahit for the love of kuya lang, sama ako sayo,’” said Mac, who bared that it was in the plan of team co-owner Charlie Dy to include his younger brother in the coaching staff all along.
“I told coach Charlie what he [Japs] said and sabi nga niya, siya ‘yung naiisip nila na assistant ko para kasi gamay na rin niya ‘yung system dahil wala ng time para mag-bond ‘yung mga coaches,” he added.
The younger Cuan already had coaching experience after handling the UST Tiger Cubs in the UAAP. But Mac said he is happy to share a big coaching break with his brother in their bid to build a winning team for Alab Pilipinas.
“Break din para sa kapatid ko. Pareho kami. We are trying to embrace it,” said Mac, who was an assistant coach of the San Miguel Beer team that last won an ABL crown for the Philippines in 2013.
With their championship experience as players, the elder Cuan hopes that the chemistry with his brother will also rub off on the players.
“I’m lucky enough to be part of winning teams from elementary, high school, college, amateur, and professional. One thing that I can share with the players is the championship vibe. It’s not talent alone. It takes a lot to win a championship. Playing together, and liking each other. We can’t beat the teams on talent alone,” said Mac.