HWASEONG, Korea — Chot Reyes said Gilas Pilipinas, as a team, decided to let Marcus Douthit play in Sunday’s game against Kazakhstan in the quarterfinals of the Asian Games.
Douthit was reinstated to the Gilas lineup on Sunday against Kazakhstan, a day after he was benched by Reyes for the Korea game as a disciplinary measure, after he reiterated his apology to the coach and the team.
Reyes had blasted the 6-10 slotman after the shock loss to Qatar, saying the naturalized player had ‘quit’ on the team while branding his actions 'un-Filipino.'
“After we had a team meeting yesterday, Marcus reiterated his apology and he said he was ready to play,” said Reyes.
“It’s a decision that was arrived at by the team, the same way we had the decision to bench him,” Reyes said.
Douthit finished with 18 points and 14 rebounds in his return to action on Sunday in a 69-67 win over Kazakhstan. But the winning margin was not enough to put the Philippines in the semifinals as the No. 2 team in Group H after Qatar lost to Korea.
Reyes also explained the limited minutes played in the Kazakhstan game of June Mar Fajardo, saying Douthit’s play forced him to use the reigning PBA MVP sparingly.
“There was no opportunity for us to play June Mar and Marcus together. Marcus was playing very well. When we took Marcus out, Kazakhstan made a run. We had to put Marcus back in. Kazakhstan had big men that can shoot from the outside. Those are the guys that June Mar can’t guard.
“A lot of times, Marcus was the best match-up for him,” said Reyes.