FOR 17 years as a professional player and a few more as a coach, Nic Belasco devoted his entire time to aspire to be the best he can be in basketball.
But Belasco's life took a new twist when he crossed over the corporate world as the general manager of The City Club, a sports facility inside the posh Alphaland Makati Place.
“I work for Alphaland now,” said Belasco, who, until recently, served as an assistant coach of Phoenix Pulse in the PBA. “I was coaching for Phoenix and I stepped away as I got too busy for Alphaland.”
The City Club is a business, lifestyle, and fitness facility that has function rooms, restaurants, and an athletic complex that houses a tennis, badminton, squash, and basketball courts.
Belasco said his exposure to the corporate world led him to his new job, having worked closely with Alphaland owner and businessman Roberto ‘Bobby’ Ongpin and president Anna Ongpin.
“I work for Bobby Ongpin. We built a hotel and I ran the City Club and I got too busy. I took some time away from coaching. I took four years and did corporate,” said Belasco.
Belasco admitted the move from basketball, where work is mostly limited to games and practices to an eight-to-five job in the corporate world, isn’t the easiest thing to do.
But the second overall pick by Sunkist in the 1997 draft said the job has become a learning experience.
“It’s been great. I’ve learned so much about business especially working for a legend like Bobby Ongpin. I report directly to him and his daughter. It’s been an educational thing for me,” the 45-year-old said.
“Playing basketball for 17 years, you really don’t get a chance to learn new things especially business because you are so focused on your craft which is basketball and being in the best condition and best teammate, best pro you could be.
"But when you retire, it’s hard to get into something new. I was very fortunate that they took me in and they gave me the ropes of the club and let me run it. It’s been two years I’ve been the general manager.
"I’m going to take this and try to keep growing with it,” said Belasco.
Despite his busy schedule at The City Club, Belasco isn't closing the door on a return to coaching.
“I’m trying to get back into it. Hopefully, I can go back,” said Belasco.