It's the human and fun side of our sports heroes

More trouble for UST coach Sablan… Austria to choose free agents over rookies… Brownlee calls PH his home


League commissioner Rebo Saguisag said he did not talk about fines or suspensions, but noted that he will study the issue in order to “preserve the public confidence in the league.” “Unlike the games, I do not have personal knowledge on the alleged statements. But because we have to preserve the public confidence in the league, we will consider looking into the matter,” said Saguisag.


“Halos wala ka ring makukuha sa mga matitira sa iyo,” Austria explained, adding he is quite familiar with the 12 Gilas Cadet players and most of the 40-odd other amateurs taking part in the draft set this Sunday at Robinson’s Place-Manila. “Kung ganoon din lang, baka mag-intact na lang kami o kaya tumingin sa mga free agents para punan kung ano man ang kailangan pa naming,” he added. “Iyung natural 3 (small forward), pero karamihan sa mga nasa draft na pamilyar ako kahit si Mabulac hindi tatalunin sa shooting ng mga iyon,” said the back-to-back Coach of the Year. “Iyung natural 3 (small forward), pero karamihan sa mga nasa draft na pamilyar ako kahit si Mabulac hindi tatalunin sa shooting ng mga iyon,” said the back-to-back Coach of the Year. Malaya


New Hotshots coach Chito Victolero insisted they have yet to make up their mind on their prized pick in the Gilas draft. “Wala pang final,” Victolero, whose team also has the fifth pick in the first round of the regular draft, told on Monday. “We’ll try to assess pa everything late this week then we’ll come up with our final decision.”


Pressed to pick his most memorable teammate in his 17-year career in the PBA, The Major Pain immediately thought of The Spark. “I played with a lot of great players, but the name that popped at the top of my head was Mark,” he said on Thursday at SportsIQ, INQUIRER’s omni-platform sports talk show.


It had only been three months since he first played for Barangay Ginebra, but for Justin Brownlee, he already called the Philippines his home. The 6-foot-4 Brownlee capped his first Ginebra stint with a game-clinching three-point shot at the buzzer in Game 6 as the Kings ended eight, long years of frustration by beating the Meralco Bolts, 4-2 in the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals last week. Fox Sports Asia


“Championships are going to come. You never put a time on it. It’s about building a foundation. And when you have good foundation, it just comes. Every championship has its own personality. And you have to appreciate all of them. It’s like your children. You learn their difference,” said Cone during Monday’s thanksgiving party at the San Miguel Corporation Headquarters in Mandaluyong. “A lot of things led to the way they did. And the incredible reaction of the fans. That overshadows everything,” added Cone. Manila Standard


Coach Leo Isaac said Belo, listed at 6-3, is ripe for the picking and can play the three or four positions for the Elite starting next season. “No. 1 sa Gilas (special draft), si Belo. Mukhang shoot na si Belo, though di pa kami nagkakausap ng opisyal ng management pero sa mga biruan namin (coaching staff) at komentaryo namin, lahat naman nagja-jive kami sa kay Belo,” Isaac told FOX Sports on Tuesday. Fox Sports Asia


“My players are feeling the pressure, but I keep on telling them to ward off the pressure with hard work,” said Ayo. “For us, we still want to learn because until now, we’re still a work in progress,” added La Salle assistant coach Louie Gonzales.


“We don’t have a guy like Gelo Alolino who can stabilize the team.” Alolino, who helped lead the Bulldogs to Final Four finishes and a championship, admitted that it pains him to see his collegiate team in this state. “Last time, I wanted to watch live kaso dun sa mga commitment sa practices ako and I have to prepare myself [for the draft]. Pero, I think, yung familiarity in each and everyone hindi pa ganun unlike before nung time namin,” he shared. “Sa system, I always believe sa system ni coach Eric [Altamirano].” “I think siguro yung small details nawawala. Siguro, naninibago pa yung new guys. Yung veterans nagkakaroon na ng personal struggles tapos hindi maka-cope up yung mga new guys.” Tiebreaker Times


“The most dangerous animals in the planet are the wounded animals, and NU is too good to have that kind of run. So obviously they’re trying to figure out within their camp what’s going on, but we fully expected them to be dangerous,” Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin remarked about the mindset of his team entering last Sunday. “And also, during that losing run for them, they’ve had great starts to games. So we were wary of the start. We wanted to make sure we came out and had a good start, and we did. We had a good start and I think that settled us.” Tiebreaker Times


HELPING the Philippine Sports Commission provide funding support for needy national sports associations will be among the thrusts of businessman-sportsman Victorico “Ricky” Vargas. “Working side by side with the PSC. That’s one. They have a good program in grassroots. We can partner with them,” said Vargas as he outlined what can be done in the next four years under his leadership. Manila Standard


As Alaska chases its first league title in over three years, the Aces are bringing in renowned American skills coach Ganon Baker to prepare them for the upcoming 42nd PBA season, which is opening on Nov. 20. “Coach Ganon Baker has trained NBA superstars like Kobe Bryant and we hired his services for eight days,” Bachman told FOX Sports. “Basically, coach Ganon is more of developing the skills of our point guards and big guys,” he added. Fox Sports Asia


Running dead-last on the eight-team field with a woeful 2-8 mark, UE is looking to stop a two-game losing skid and keep its flickering semifinal hopes alive in their 2 p.m. match with the favored Green Archers side, still unscathed after 11 matches. “For sure, we will still try to play hard and go for the win. It doesn’t matter if we’re out or not. Kumbaga isang daliri na lang nakakapit, malalaglag na kami,” Pumaren stressed. “But until there’s a chance, there’s still life.” Fox Sports Asia


UP’s first year coach Bo Perasol certainly acknowledges that, saying: “It’s really crucial for both of us.” With the Bulldogs clearly on the ropes, the Fighting Maroons are eager to avenge a 69-80 loss in their first-round meeting last Oct. 1 but Perasol knows it’s easier said than done. “I don’t think NU is vulnerable to anybody,” he stressed. “They are a well-coached team and has a winning experience. Most of their losses were close too.” Fox Sports Asia