SHORTLY after Gilas Pilipinas suffered the worst loss under his watch, Chot Reyes was silent except for a three-word tweet.
"We needed that," was Reyes' cryptic post on his Twitter account, just minutes after Gilas was dealt a comprehensive 64-114 defeat by a hot-shooting Ukraine side at the end of its campaign in a four-nation pocket tournament in Antibes, France.
The tweet, of course, had fans thinking, considering the 50-point loss had Gilas reeling to a new low after a tournament that started on an encouraging note with a fighting stand against France and included a decent performance against Australia's tall Boomers.
Asked about it later, Reyes said Gilas needed a reality check like the loss to Ukraine so it won't lose sight of the enormity of the task it is facing in the Fiba World Cup in Spain.
"We needed to play a team that would overpower us inside and kill us from the outside to really make us realize the level of competition we will be facing (in the World Cup)," the multi-titled coach told Spin.ph.
Well, if it was a reality check Gilas needed, Ukraine certainly gave the Filipinos one.
Coached by longtime NBA coach and TV analyst Mike Fratello, the Ukrainians peppered the Filipinos with 19 three-pointers and pounded them into submission in a game which Gilas' biggest player, Andray Blatche, sat out.
The 0-3 (win-loss) stint in France, however, is not without positives as Reyes relished the opportunity to finally see Blatche mesh with his teammates.
"The experience of playing against world-class competition," Reyes said when asked about the gains Gilas made in the France pocket tournament, "and playing with Andray."