Despite losing Game Seven of the Governors’ Cup to Rain or Shine finals, B-MEG coach Tim Cone said the series was something the team could build on in the future.
“This is something we want to keep on doing and we made it to two finals in a row. It’s a great series and it will be good for our team in terms of growth,” he said.
Cone left Alaska after 22 years last year, moving to a talented B-MEG squad weeks prior to the start of the season. The Llamados zoomed to the top seed after the eliminations of his very first conference, but were upset by Powerade in the quarterfinals of the Philippine Cup.
But B-MEG rebounded by winning the Commissioner’s Cup, giving Cone a title in only his second conference with the squad. The Llamados followed it up by crashing the finals of the Governors’ Cup, where they gallantly battled back from a 3-1 series deficit before losing in Game Seven.
“We’re going to remember this last game and for everything we did this year. I find it special coaching a special group of guys and they were committed to come back for a Game Seven,” he said.
Under Cone, several members of the Llamados have seen tremendous growth in their games. Superstar guard James Yap, a two-time Most Valuable Player, was able to showcase his all-around game, becoming a post-up threat and a solid rebounder and passer. According to Cone, he’s no slouch on defense either.
“James is now a decent defender and he can be a good defender if he commits himself to it,” said Cone.
Peter June Simon, who has had a reputation as a terrible defender, has turned into a solid defensive cog for Cone, often drawing tough assignments. The American coach has also gotten the most of Yancy De Ocampo, who went from being a throw-in in the Rico Maierhofer trade to becoming a dangerous weapon in the B-MEG arsenal.
Despite all their success, Cone thinks there are still lots of room for improvement for the Llamados.
“It really takes chemistry and continuously doing it the right way which will make us succeed. But I like how the team has grown, battling back against adversities and developing character. I hope that character propelled us to greater heights next season,” said Cone.
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