THE triangle offense may no longer be in vogue in the NBA after Phil Jackson's retirement, but San Mig Coffee coach Tim Cone's faith in Tex Winter's system has never wavered.
Cone, in fact, expects the triangle offense to take the Mixers to new heights this season.
With better talent surrounding two-time MVP James Yap this season, Cone expects the Mixers to eclipse their performance last season using the same, time-tested offense that helped him win 14 championships with Alaska Milk as well as his first one with San Mig Coffee.
“I think the triangle offense is especially relevant for a talented team (like San Mig). So the more talented the players you have, the more the triangle offense works well,” Cone told Spin.ph.
The veteran coach, one championship short of matching Baby Dalupan's record of 15 league titles, said the triangle brought out the best from his new team last season - and left Yap more room to find his shots.
“We’ve got five threats on the floor, that’s what made us effective last year. Imagine, the defense can’t turn on James as much because there are five threats on the floor,” he added.
The Mixers opened the season with a 103-83 demolition of Alaska, ironically a team that also runs the triangle under former Cone disciple Luigi Trillo, and the San Mig coach expects the offense to be even better with new reinforcements and more healthy bodies available to the team this season.
According to Cone, the Mixers' core of Yap, Marc Pingris, Yancy de Ocampo, Joe de Vance, Peter June Simon, Jonas Villanueva, and JC Intal are still just beginning to grasp the system. The longer they stay together, the more they will shine in the offense, he added.
“James and the rest of the guys are still in the infancy stage of the offense. So they’re gonna get it soon. I feel now it’s gonna get better for the team,” said Cone.
“It’s important to keep the core of the team intact, which I did with Alaska with Johnny (Abarrientos) Jojo (Lastimosa) and Bong (Hawkins). That’s been my style ever since.”