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New TNT team manager Jolas says Mikey Williams negotiations is ‘not doing well’

Team managers are tasked to make the lives of a squad’s head coach much, much easier.

And Jojo Lastimosa, in his new role as TNT’s team manager, plans to do just that for one of his best friends in the world Chot Reyes.

“When management hires somebody, they have to ask the coach,” said the 58-year-old coach turned executive, who replaced Gabby Cui. “First, I think they have to ask his opinion, and if the personality fits the coach and if I could really contribute to the franchise.

“I would say that Chot played a huge part in my hiring, but at the same time, I have to prove that I don’t need a backer of sorts just to get into a position.”

Lastimosa’s first order of business though was to get the task of bringing Mikey Williams back to the country away from Reyes.

Over the past month, it was the five-time PBA Coach of the Year who had been negotiating with Williams’ camp for a new contract.

Though the 2021 Philippine Cup Finals MVP is still contracted with the team for another year, he has the power to re-negotiate as a clause in his initial contract stated that he can re-configure his deal if he led TNT to a championship.

Lastimosa, a member of the league’s 25 greatest players of all time, shared to Tiebreaker Times that he got to talk to Williams on Wednesday.

2021-PBA-Philippine-Cup-Finals-MVP-TNT-vs-Magnolia-Mikey-Williams New TNT team manager Jolas says Mikey Williams negotiations is 'not doing well' Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports news

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“Right away,” he replied when asked if he had a chance to talk with Williams already. “In fact, si Chot was the one who was dealing with Mikey before I stepped in. And now parang they wanted me to deal with it now so he can focus on coaching.

“And I’ve spoken to Mikey yesterday for the first time. I’m just relaying to Mikey what the management is thinking right now, their stance. So, let’s just leave it at that.”

Despite having a new man on the other side of the line, Williams is still not budging.

#ReadMore  TNT looks to sustain momentum as Parks remains questionable for Game Four

As of publishing, the 30-year-old product of Cal State Fullerton is still in Los Angeles, California.

In his first pitch, Lastimosa admitted that Williams is a tough nut to crack.

“It’s not doing well. Not doing well. But we are hopeful.”

Still, Lastimosa vows to do whatever it takes to bring the players his good pal needs.

2022-PBA-Philippine-Cup-NLEX-vs-TNT-Chot-Reyes New TNT team manager Jolas says Mikey Williams negotiations is 'not doing well' Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports news

(C) PBA Images

“I’m in a new role to help him kind of make everything easier for him to coach – get him the players, give him personnel he needs,” said the former NLEX deputy coach.

“So yun ang role ko dito, to make Chot’s job easier.”

All PBA games stream live on GigaPlay. Download it now on Android or IOS.

The second game of each gameday is also live-streamed on SMART Sports.

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