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Returning Cariaso taking things slow

Jeffrey Cariaso was reduced into a mere observer when he formally assumed the head coaching role at Blackwater in the Philippine Basketball Association.

Cariaso took down notes and allowed his assistant coach Joe Silva to guide the Bossing in their game against  San Miguel Beer in the ongoing PBA On Tour Sunday at the Filoili EcoOil Centre in San Juan.

He, however, will return to the sidelines when Blackwater takes on Meralco after an 11-day break on 14 July at the Ynares Center in Pasig City.

“I would rather be an observer first as it would be unfair for the guys,” said Cariaso, who was holding basketball clinics for young children in the United States when his appointment as Blackwater head coach was formalized.

It’s quite a while since Cariaso barked instructions at the sidelines of a PBA game.

His last coaching stint was at the end of the 2021 season with Converge. The FiberXers, however, replaced him with Aldin Ayo.

“It’s been awhile since I last coached a PBA team,” added Cariaso, who has worked as a game analyst at the time when he took a temporary break from coaching.

“But coaching is something that I really love to do.”

Holding basketball clinics in California, according to Cariaso, was one way of trying to get his feet wet and staying close to the game.

“It’s something I’ve been doing since the 2014 Jr. NBA Camp to teach young players the game of basketball,” he said.

“It’s been my dream to put one in California where I grew up. It was open for everyone, but mostly, the camp was composed of young boys and girls, Filipinos who are based there.”

“We’ve seen potential players, some of them kids at the early age of 13, who have also shown interest in playing for the national team in the future and hopefully, they would be able to get Philippine passports before they turn 16.”

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