EVEN though he’s now the one calling the shots for Barako Bull, coach Koy Banal does not intend to totally scrap the system ingrained by predecessor Siot Tanquingcen.
Banal declined to talk about the mystery behind the sudden removal of Tanquingcen a day before the PBA Philippine Cup kicked off last Sunday, but admitted there won’t be much changes with what the Energy’s former coach had already instilled within the team.
“Wala kaming binago (on Tanquingcen’s system). You can only do that much. Even if you have one month to prepare, you can only do so much, but we just had some tweaking na ginawa sa sistema,” explained Banal, who started serving as assistant coach eight years ago with Purefoods and Petron, before moving to Barako Bull last season.
Banal however, had a rude welcome as full-time coach in the league after the Energy wasted away a 15-point lead to lose in double overtime against Meralco on Wednesday, 112-108.
Nonetheless, the soft-spoken mentor said he was happy with the effort his players showed considering he is still relatively new to the job.
“The plan (against Meralco) was just to make the game close, but I’m thankful because the players gave their best. They made it close,” explained Banal, who won championships with Far Eastern University in the UAAP (2003) and San Beda College in the NCAA (2006).
The Barako Bull coach did own up to the Energy’s loss, blaming himself for the team’s failure to sustain their effort and inability to contain Meralco big man Reynel Hugnatan, who finished with a career-high 28 points.
“I don’t want to make an excuse, the players delivered and gave their best. I hope we can be smart on our next game,” said Banal, whose team swings back to action on Sunday against GlobalPort.