MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone is giving his players around three weeks off after their triumph in the 2019 PBA Governors' Cup.
The Gin Kings clinched the championship last week, beating budding rivals Meralco in five games. On Monday, they celebrated their victory by throwing a party for their fans at Metrowalk.
"We're gonna come back mid-February," Cone said of his players. "So, they'll get about a good three weeks off."
It is a much-needed break for the Gin Kings. Cone pointed out that it has been an extraordinarily long season for the PBA, as the All-Filipino Cup started in January 2019, and the Governors' Cup ended in January 2020.
"This season has gone more than a year. It's a 13-month season," Cone said. "Whoever heard of that?"
"I'm not sure that the fans know how much wear and tear that is on the players. Plus, our guys like Japeth (Aguilar) has been in the national team the whole season, and then they did the Southeast Asian Games," he added.
"So, it's been a very taxing one."
As early as now, however, the Gin Kings are already excited for the upcoming season. Cone revealed that Jared Dillinger had to be told to "stop working," as the swingman had volunteered to consult with his shooting coach just a day after their title win.
That, said Cone, was the attitude of all his players.
"I have to protect them from themselves, because otherwise, they're gonna wear themselves down too much," he said.
"I think our guys are really excited to come back and go for the All-Filipino. It's just that kind of reaction," he also said.
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