JERICHO Cruz and Beau Belga were not as shocked as everyone after news broke out that coach Yeng Guiao has parted ways with Rain or Shine, ending a successful six-year partnership.
But that doesn't mean they didn't feel sad over the departure of the NLEX-bound coach, who gave the franchise two championships, the last one coming in the Commissioner's Cup this season.
"I'm so sad kasi he's my first coach in the PBA, he's the one who gave me the break," said Cruz, who was drafted ninth overall in the 2014 PBA Rookie Draft by Rain or Shine.
"Siya yung tumulong magbigay ng confidence ko sa liga. So sad na he left us but that's part of the business."
Belga sounded like he has accepted the parting of ways with his longtime coach, saying, "Andyan na 'yan e, di naman kami puwedeng mag-complain dahil sa desisyon ni coach. Desisyon nya yun."
However, the 'Extra Rice' slotman admitted the multi-titled coach's departure will definitely have a huge impact on the Elasto Painters, who Guiao has led to two championships and six finals appearances in six years in charge.
"Malaki impact. Kasi unang-una si Coach Yeng nagbuo nitong team na to e. Yung players malaki respeto sa kanya, talagang magpapakamatay players para sa kanya, he said.
But if given an opportunity, both players, whose respective contracts are expring, expressed their desire to play for the multi-titled coach in the future.
"I hope to play for him in the future," Cruz said.
Belga, plucked out of obscurity by Guiao and allowed to blossom at Rain or Shine, echoed: "I'm not closing the door na makasama ko pa sya. Kung 'yun plano ni God para samin baka yun din."