Veteran coach Tim Cone felt relief as Brgy. Ginebra was able to deliver on the night the PBA honored the late great tactician Baby Dalupan, who passed away last August 17.
After the league offered a video tribute and final buzzer salute to Dalupan, the Cone-mentored Gin Kings bounced back from a stinging loss as they steamrolled Rain or Shine, 97-88, on Sunday at the Big Dome.
“I’m honored that we’re able to do this on Baby’s tribute and get the win,” said Cone in the post-game interview as Ginebra improved to 5-2 for a tie in 2nd with Mahindra.
The 58-year old American coach surpassed Dalupan’s previous record for most championship of 15 in the PBA after his Grand Slam season with San Mig Coffee Mixers, but Cone insists ‘The Maestro’ will remain his inspiration.
“Except for my father, the only other person I would want to emulate in terms of life, in accomplishments, and the type of person he was, Baby Dalupan in the real second,” shared Cone. “I’m really happy that were able to honor him tonight.”
If total coaching career championships will be the basis, Cone only reached almost one third of what Dalupan has achieved in his lifetime. Arguably the best coach to have ever lived in the Philippines, Dalupan recorded 52 championships across the collegiate, professional and national coaching stints.
But more than the accolades, Cone believes Dalupan’s legacy will remain with his family.
“You can measure a man by his family, and he’s got great family members, he’s got great daughters. His wife is really one of a kind,” he shared. – By Jason Mercene
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