THE prime jobs kept coming for Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone.
As he makes another tour of duty with Gilas Pilipinas’ think tank, the multi-titled Mr. Cone got a call up from Miami’s Erik Spoelstra to serve as part of the Heat’s coaching staff in the coming National Basketball Association (NBA) Summer League.
Mr. Cone will assist Malik Allen in the pre-season competition set July 7 to 15 in San Francisco and Las Vegas, the PBA’s winningest coach himself announced on One Sports on Wednesday.
The Miami Heat gig will keep Mr. Cone out of the Gin Kings’ bench in four of their Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Philippine Cup assignments against Converge, Terrafirma, TnT and Meralco. Ginebra assistant Richard del Rosario will take over momentarily.
“I’m going to try to go in there (Heat’s Summer League campaign) with an incredibly humble idea and just try to soak up anything there is,” said Mr. Cone, following in the footsteps of PBA great Jimmy Alapag, who served in a similar capacity with Sacramento last year.
Mr. Cone revealed his Summer League stint a day after Gilas program director/head coach Chot Reyes named him to the national team’s powerhouse coaching staff that includes Nenad Vučinić, UAAP winner Goldwin Monteverde of UP, Jong Uichico and Josh Reyes.
“I’m here to form the best team possible, not only the players but also the coaching staff for the 2023 FIBA World Cup,” said Mr. Reyes as he announced Mr. Cone’s appointment on Tuesday night while receiving his sixth Coach of the Year award from the PBA Press Corps.
“He wants to help and I think he’ll bring great value to the coaching staff,” Mr. Reyes said of Mr. Cone.
The 24-time PBA champion readily welcomed his reunion with Mr. Reyes, his assistant in the Philippine Centennial Team that took bronze in the Asian Games and won the Jones Cup in 1998.
“I’m happy and honored to have the chance to help coach Chot and the Gilas program in any capacity. It can’t get any more exciting than hosting the World Championships at home,” Mr. Cone told The STAR.
“What a thrill for the country and an honor. I’m looking forward to being a part of the team that puts our best foot forward.” — Olmin Leyba