Aldin Ayo finally got his wish.
As the brand new head coach of the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas team for FIBA 3×3 tournaments, he will mentor Alvin Pasaol, whom he once wooed for Letran and then La Salle.
“Si Alvin, pinuntahan ko pa ‘to dati sa Davao eh,” he shared during his introduction to the players and Manila mayor Isko Moreno inside City Hall last Monday.
“Sayang nga lang, ‘di namin nakuha.”
Pasaol chose to go to UE instead of Intramuros. And a year later, Ayo joined him in the UAAP as head coach for the Green Archers.
Though they were on opposing sides, the burly scorer still made a mark on the fiery mentor known for his ‘Mayhem’ brand of basketball. In their first meeting, Pasaol dropped 49 points in a loss to Ayo and La Salle.
Now, Ayo gets to mentor Pasaol in the rechristened Manila Chooks TM continuing to gear up for the FIBA 3×3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
“Masaya naman kami kasi may bagong head coach na tayo,” expressed the country’s no. 2 3×3 player.
“Ako, sobrang excited kasi bagong knowledge na naman ‘to. Alam naman natin na si coach Aldin, sobrang taas ng IQ at experience sa basketball.”
A proven winner in 5-on-5, Manila Chooks TM’s new signal-caller has yet to try his hand at 3×3.
Fortunately for him, his players are guaranteeing that he will see the same success in this new sport.
“Magta-translate ‘yung coaching niya rito, panigurado,” remarked Pasaol.
“First time pa lang niya ‘to, pero I’m sure na bago pa man siya ma-finalize as coach, nag-aaral na siya para pagdating niya sa amin, alam na niya gagawin.”
PH no. 5 Troy Rike seconded the statement. As he put it, “It’s a good new direction. He’s obviously had a lot of success in college. I’m excited to see the ideas — the physicality, the toughness — he can bring here.”
Rike himself is also familiar with ‘Mayhem’. While playing for National U, he was once on the receiving end of the physicality and toughness of Ayo’s teams.
Ayo is also no stranger to no. 6 Santi Santillan, his player in La Salle, as well as top 3×3 player Joshua Munzon, who scored 46 points on his Ironcon-UST side in the PBA D-League.
Players and coach already know each other — now, it’s just time to take things to the next level.