Joe Silva surprised everyone with his sudden decision to resign from his position as head coach of the University of the East Red Warriors.
But according to UE’s head of basketball operations Lawrence Chongson, it did not shock anyone inside the camp, since it was a long time coming.
“When he left, no big deal nga sa mga players eh. Not even. It was a non-issue with the players with him leaving,” said Chongson.
“Ang naging issue yung medyo… Some people in the school tried to interfere. Tried to make a circus out of it.”
Since May, Chongson has been calling the shots for the Red Warriors, including their tune-up against Gilas Youth last June up to their recent win in the TIP Invitational tournament last week.
Chongson revealed that Silva was given a chance to drop down to assistant coach, while he would be the head coach. Unfortunately, he and Silva could not see eye to eye.
“As I have said, not to offend anybody, four months ko sila cino-coach. Si coach Joe, alam naman ito eh. He was a part of it. He just wouldn’t let go of the title.
“Allowing me to coach them, he keeps on either, doon lang naman nagkatalo eh [sic]. ‘Di ba, it’s nothing new,” he shared.
UE ended up accepting Silva’s resignation last Monday evening, while naming Bong Tan as the squad’s interim head coach.
However, UE’s new staff could not pick up a debut win, falling to the UST Growling Tigers, 82-95. And Chongson hopes that there’s nowhere to go but up for them after their dismal debut.
“Sino ba maging masaya sa pagkatalo, ‘di ba? But it’s the first game of the season. We’ve been through some turmoil in the past few days – not to take anything away from UST. They played a great game. We were really outplayed,” he admitted.
“But put to the fact that we had to go through some [difficulty]. But I would only hope it would toughen us up as we go along.”