TIM Cone obviously was disappointed anew with yet another early exit by Ginebra. Still, he was proud of the way the Kings continue to develop as a unit under his wings.
Joe Devance, the longtime Cone protégé, said there was no dressing down or finger pointing inside the Ginebra dugout shortly after the team’s campaign in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup ended Tuesday night with a 102-89 loss to Rain or Shine at the Araneta Coliseum.
The American coach did express his displeasure over the way the Kings played that allowed the Elasto Painters to sweep their best-of-three quarterfinal playoffs and advance to the semis for the ninth straight conference.
But not lost on Cone is the continuous growth of the team just two conferences since he took over the coaching helm.
“He was disappointed with the way we came out to play but he was proud of our growth this conference,” said Devance speaking on behalf of the multi-titled coach he had previously played for at Alaska and Star.
“We still have a lot of learning to do but he was proud of our growth.”
Cone refused to grant interviews for the second straight game, leaving the venue immediately much like he did when the Kings also lost the series opener on Sunday, 88-84.
Devance said the Kings are a talented bunch but have yet to get their act together.
“Individually, we all have a great talent, we just have to put together as a unit,” said the Fil-Am power forward. “Once we figure that out, we’ll be a great team.”
Added Devance, 34, “We wanted to win but that was the problem. Each and every one of us wanted to win so badly that we kind of do it on our own instead of coming together as a team. And that’s where our growth needs to be.”