Champion head coach Don Dulay has stepped down from his position as mentor of the reigning MPBL champions Davao Occidental Tigers, citing family matters back in the United States as his reason for doing so.
The development comes as a shock for the Tigers, which is preparing for its stint in the Filbasket tournament next month.
“You have been a great mentor to the players. You certainly made our ‘roar’ louder,” read the team’s statement. “Good luck on your journey! We will always be proud of you because no matter what will happen, you will always be a true tiger!”
Dulay, though, will be exiting on a high note as he steered the Tigers to the championship in the 2019-21 Chooks-to-Go MPBL Lakan Championship with a 3-1 finals win over bitter rivals, San Juan—the very same team that beat them for the MPBL crown in 2019.
A source within the team has mentioned that Matt Makalintal will be named the team’s new head coach.
“We will never be the same again without you,” said team owner Claudine Bautista on her Facebook post.
“But we only hope for the best para sa’yo at sa pamilya mo. I know that as a family man, you are doing what you think is best for your family. And please know that we are very supportive of that! It saddens us to let you go, but we also want the best for you.
“Abot langit ang pasasalamat ko, ng mga players at ng buong team sa lahat ng panahon, effort, at dedikasyon na inilaan mo para maabot ng team ang kung ano man ang naabot natin ngayon,” she continued. (JNP)