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MANILA, Philippines – Tim Cone will not pass up on the chance to once again call the shots for Gilas Pilipinas.
Cone on Sunday, January 28, said he welcomes the task as he reluctantly addressed reports that the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) will soon announce his appointment as head coach of the national team.
“They haven’t told me anything so hard for me to comment. But literally I didn’t get a call,” said Cone after Barangay Ginebra got swept by San Miguel in the semifinals of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
“I know that we have talked about it but I think that’s for another setting than this one, I’m not ready to talk about that. Kind of down at the moment, kind of upset, so I don’t want to talk about something that’s outside at this point.”
“But if they did choose me, I’m looking forward to doing it.”
Cone has made a strong case for the job after steering the Philippines to its first title in Asian Games men’s basketball since 1962 when the team reigned supreme in Hangzhou, China, in October.
The Nationals also won an Asian Games bronze in 1998 and a Southeast Asian Games crown in 2019 with Cone at the helm.
Cone, the winningest head coach in the PBA with 25 titles, admitted last January 19 that the SBP interviewed him for the coaching post, although he said “nothing definite” has come out from their discussions.
If Cone returns as coach, he will be tasked to guide Gilas Pilipinas in the opening window of the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers in February, and possibly, the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in July.
The Philippines will face Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei to open the Asia Cup Qualifiers on February 23 and 25, respectively. – Rappler.com