Chot Reyes has been under fire from Gilas Pilipinas supporters ever since the Philippine national basketball team failed to retain the gold medal in SEAG basketball.
The loss to Indonesia ended the country’s 31-year reign and 13-straight gold medal finishes in the regional showpiece.
The clamor for Reyes’ resignation only got louder after Gilas absorbed a 15-point defeat to lower-ranked Lebanon in its 2022 FIBA Asia Cup opener last Wednesday.
The 58-year old Reyes, however, remains unperturbed and is keeping his focus on the ‘big picture’.
“I’m just keeping myself focused on the big picture and the big picture is to make sure that we put together the best team for the world championships in 2023,” said the concurrent national team program director shortly after the squad’s 42-point victory over India.
“Everything we’re doing now is preparation and buildup for 2023. That is where people can judge, how well that team plays. By that time, I am sure we would have put together our best team,” he added.
The TNT Tropang Giga head coach disclosed that he wasn’t even interested in the post but was still ‘given’ to him after Tab Baldwin resigned last February.
“I was happily retired and doing my work, enjoying my life, coaching my professional team. But my predecessor stepped down. Somebody has to do the job,” said Reyes. “It took a long time for me to accept it because I knew how difficult the job.”
He accepted the offer due to his willingness to serve the country and nothing else.
“I know that all the negative comments come with the job, come with the territory. I know in my heart that I’m doing my work, I’m doing it for my country.”
“There is no other intention behind it except to serve my country and that is the only way I know how to serve my country.”