Nobody likes online trolls, right? They love to hijack the discussion or sometimes they push for a false narrative. It’s almost election season, so expect trolls to come in droves.
It would be great, wouldn’t it, if we’d take a collective push against a troll, right?
Well, we got sort of a preview in the past few days when the Korean coach behaved like an online troll, first dismissing Gilas’s win in their first game as a “lucky shot.” Not unlike those who’d comment against their least-liked NBA teams winning as “chamba.”
Expectedly, he got a great pushback from almost everyone, including members of the team.
“Frankly, I think that’s pretty rich of any coach to walk off a game in which you lose and to claim that it was good luck on the part of your opponent,” Tab Baldwin said.
That’s just diplomatic-speak for, “What a sore loser.”
Luckily for us, Gilas Pilipinas faced off the Koreans again and showed how wrong the visiting coach was with an 82-77 win to complete a sweep of the tournament.
Instead of eating humble pie, the coach stayed in character, saying that he never really considered the Philippines as a rival. He can say all the things he wants but I’ll take that 6-0 finish by Gilas over his statement any day of the week.
By the way, the team’s impressive showing had sportswriters scouring the history book. Spin.ph’s Randolph Leongson unearthed an interesting tidbit. The last time the Philippines won twice in a row against Korea happened in the ‘70s. The first one, 88-80, was in the 1971 ABC Championships—now the Fiba Asia Cup—which led to the country earning a berth in the 1972 Olympics. Then the second one happened in the 1973 ABC Championships in Manila, where the Philippines won 90-78 to finish the campaign undefeated in 10 games and earn the gold medal.
Wouldn’t it be perfect if this latest pair of back-to-back wins leads to a return to the Olympiad? But there’s another tough hurdle, this one in Belgrade where the Philippines will be facing Serbia and the Dominican Republic.
Can this Gilas squad make history in Belgrade? I wouldn’t discount it. This squad has surprised us a lot. Most fans were highly-critical before the latest tournament but almost all of them have been converted to believers.
June 22, 2021
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