Gregorio says PBA-SBP partnership crucial as search for next Gilas coach begins
PBA chairman Pato Gregorio says the SBP selection committee will have to set the parameters of the 'succession process' following Chot Reyes' decision to take himself out of consideration in the search for Gilas coach. Jerome Ascano

ASIDE from naming the new Gilas Pilipinas coach to succeed Chot Reyes, PBA chairman Patrick 'Pato' Gregorio said the more critical task at hand is on how to sustain the gains of the Philippine team following its historic appearance in the recent Fiba World Cup in Seville, Spain.

Gregorio shared his sentiment ahead of the Tuesday meeting of the five-man Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas committee tasked to select and appoint the coach and players of the Gilas team bound for next year’s Fiba-Asia men’s basketball championships set in China.

[See Chot Reyes takes name out of consideration in search for next Gilas coach]

“Even before we start analyzing how we will choose the coach, what we have to realize is that now, we have an opportunity to be part of this cooperation between the SBP and the PBA, yung paano na tayo makakapagtulungan para ma-address itong mga challenges, how to be better in the international competitions because narating na natin yun eh (Fiba World Cup), so to level up is more challenging,” Gregorio told on Monday.

Gregorio, who is part of the selection committee chaired by current SBP vice-chairman Ricky Vargas, said he doubts if candidates can be named after the first meeting which he said will most likely set the parameters for the “succession process” after Reyes' resignation.

“I actually look at it (SBP committee meeting) as a process that is required, just like any big organization must go through that process,” he said. “But before any succession process starts, the parameters are set, so to be very honest, I look at this as work. I am not excited, but it is work that must be done properly.”

Gregorio said he is excited about the pro league’s all-out commitment to Gilas’ next mission of clinching a berth in the 2016 Rio Olympics in Brazil.

“We have to understand how the PBA as a league can continue to help the national team and the SBP for that matter. Iyun ang mas importante,” stressed Gregorio, who also serves as Talk ‘N Text’s board governor.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @richava