Coach Jimmy says ‘bad call’ led to his first-ever technical foul

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jan 11, 2018 01:03 PM
Coach Jimmy says ‘bad call’ led to his first-ever technical
Jimmy Alapag wasn't called for many technical fouls when he was a player - he now has one as a head coach

Jimmy Alapag is almost two months into his first time as head coach.

And at this point, he has already reached some sort of a milestone.

The Alab Pilipinas head coach was tagged with his first-ever technical foul late in the final frame of their matchup with Singapore on Wednesday.

Trying to trim a six-point deficit with under four minutes remaining, Alab’s Justin Brownlee shut down Singapore’s Xavier Alexander, with the former forcing the latter into jumping with the ball and still landing with it.

Once Alexander landed, no whistle was blown and he launched an attempt that went into the basket and was counted.

However, the shot clock was down to zero before he could release the ball.

The Filipinos inside the Filoil Flying V Centre were incensed by the non-call, among them Alapag who rushed towards game officials.

However, he was instead called for his first-ever technical foul.

Yes, the mild-mannered Philippine basketball legend was hit with a penalty for continuous complaining – and that’s where you know there’s something wrong.

And so, Alexander’s controversial conversion, AJ Mandani’s made technical free throw, Alexander’s split from the stripe, and Mandani’s cold-blooded trey ballooned the Slingers’ lead to 89-76 with just a little over a minute left – effectively snuffing out Alab’s chances at a rally.

Post-game, Alapag did not mince words about how that non-call changed the complexion of the contest. “You know, I’ll never blame the referees for a loss, but that was a bad call, a really bad call. You know, with the game still in the balance and you make that call,” he told reporters.

The rookie mentor went on to say that right after the sequence in question, referees approached him and admitted they made a mistake. “I mean, it wasn’t (too) close (to call). I’ve played for a long time and if it was (too) close (to call), okay fine,” he said.

He then continued, “But they even told me afterward that it was their fault. But then, it was their fault, but we’re already down 10 because you gave me a technical and you count a shot that shouldn’t have counted. It was a big call and again, it’s something I wasn’t happy about.”

Still, Alapag made it clear that Alab did not lose because of that non-call. As he put it, “That wasn’t what cost us the game. I think Singapore just came out and played a better game than we did.”

Indeed, Filipino-Canadian AJ Mandani was a force for the Slingers, scoring 11 of his 23 points in the last seven minutes. Chris Charles was also unstoppable and pounded in nine of his 29 points in the final frame.

At the other end, Alexander shackled down Brownlee to only 16 points on 37 percent shooting.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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