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Cone thrilled to reunite with ‘baby’

Photo by William WEST / AFP

HANGZHOU, China — Tim Cone couldn’t wait to return to his “baby” following his victorious stint with Gilas Pilipinas in the men’s basketball event of the 19th Asian Games here.

Cone, the tactician who guided Gilas Pilipinas to their first Asian Games gold medal in 61 years, said he is excited to return to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel after being away for the past several months due to commitment with the national team.

Cone and Gilas Pilipinas flew out of this bustling Chinese metropolis on Saturday, a day after beating Jordan, 70-60, in the final to accomplish the mission of clinching the Asian Games crown for the first time since 1962 in Jakarta.

He said the first thing he will do is to pay his sisters in the United States a quick visit before buckling down to work with his “baby” to lead it to another Philippine Basketball Association title and live up to the legacy of its former leader in Robert “Sonny” Jaworksi.

“Right now, to be honest with you, I’m not yet thinking forward, I’m just thinking about Ginebra and going back to Ginebra. That’s my baby. I’m still trying to leave up to Sonny’s legacy right now with Ginebra and now the Asian Games,” Cone said.

“That’s really my focus right now: To get back in Ginebra. I’m excited to go back to them and go to work.”

Cone said although some of the Ginebra players like Justin Bronwlee, Jamie Malonzo, Scottie Thompson, Japeth Aguilar, and LA Tenorio have been with him with the national team, it’s still different working with the entire Ginebra crew.

“I haven’t worked with Ginebra for about four or five months because I’ve been in the Asian Games and World Cup and I’ve been training with them,” he said.

“So I miss our guys there. I’m ready to come back and work with them — after a short break. I need a short break and visit my sisters in the United States.”

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