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Al Panlilio reveals Chot Reyes planned to resign as Gilas coach after SEAG fall

Coach Chot Reyes thought about leaving Gilas right after the SEA Games, Al Panlilio revealed. FIBA (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Chot Reyes was revealed to have considered stepping down as Gilas Pilipinas coach after the team's now infamous silver medal finish in the recent Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi.

Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Al Panlilio bared on Monday night that Reyes actually offered to resign as national team coach after Gilas failed to defend the SEA Games men's 5x5 basketball championship, bowing to Indonesia in the virtual gold medal game on May 22.

"After the SEA Games, he has [offered his resignation]," Panlilio said over SEAG Network.

However, Panlilio said the SBP vetoed Reyes' resignation.

"I think it is not his fault. I think there are a lot of issues that we have to address for us to support him even better. We didn't accept that," Panlilio explained.

In fact, he added that the SBP will continue to support the concurrent TNT mentor now that he has a new ally coming, current Ginebra coach Tim Cone.

"We're here to support Chot all the way now that Tim Cone is also coming in with Nenad [Vucinic] also there and Goldwin [Monteverde] also helping out," Panlilio further said.

He then reiterated the call for unity among the basketball stakeholders, this time putting a premium on supporting Reyes.

"If we can unify all the stakeholders from basketball to really support the program and Chot, that's the best way for us to go. Mahirap ding papalit-palit eh," Panlilio continued. "I think Chot knows what to do. Ang puso niya, para sa Pilipinas, and I think his commitment, despite all the issues and the odds for him to still commit to become coach, malaking bagay yan."

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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