GINEBRA coach Tim Cone stood behind Gilas Pilipinas counterpart Tab Baldwin over his selection of his 12-man lineup for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament, saying he respects the national mentor’s vision on the makeup of the final roster.
While some didn’t agree with Baldwin’s lineup, Cone said he wasn’t surprised with the roster, particularly the current one that saw his Gin Kings player LA Tenorio as well as Calvin Abueva get the boot.
“People don’t understand that coaches have their own vision of how they see things will happen and they have to coach within that vision,” Cone said. “They can’t coach within somebody else’s vision.”
“So it never surprises me when I see lineups being made that are different from what I would think they are, because I know that I have a very different opinion from what everybody else does,” the PBA’s most successful coach added.
Cone recalled the one time he, then coach of Alaska, was “furious” over a selection of an All-Star team by coach Norman Black, who left Alaska skipper Jojo Lastimosa out in a year where they won the Grand Slam.
“I made a big deal about it in the press and Jojo was really upset,” Cone recounted. “I think we went out and played Norman’s team a few days after the selection and Jojo had like thirty-eight points. Guys can be like that; they get hurt.”
“But that was the last time I’ve ever done that,” the former national mentor was quick to add. “I realized now that after having, selecting All-Star and national teams, myself, that you can’t go in there trying to make everybody happy.”
“You got to stay to your vision. And I think that’s what coach Tab did and that’s going to give us our best chance,” he added, saying Gilas 4.0 has a “balanced” and “versatile” lineup.
“Coach Tab will be able to show different kinds of lineups and make adjustments during games (based on) how he sees games are going, and that’s basically what you want in a lineup,” Cone said.