FIBA WORLD CUP ASIAN QUALIFIERS: Chot stands his ground with Gilas, basically names Kickert as trigger
Paul Lintag on Jul 02, 2018 11:51 PM
"I have no... whatever his motive is, there was no excuse for him doing what he did during the warm-up. Nakakita na ba kayo na tinira yung kalaban sa warm-up? Sa lay-up line? Hindi pa naguumpis tinira na tayo. What do you expect us to do?" --- Gilas head coach Chot Reyes on Australia's Daniel Kickert.
BOCAUE, BULACAN --- There's obviously more to the story of Gilas Pilipinas' ugly brawl against Australia Monday at the Philippine Arena here.
But in the immediate aftermath of the free for all, the Philippine national team is standing its ground, basically saying that all they did was protect themselves.
In a quick interview with a handful of media after the game, Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes says that they actually tried to restrain their players.
But after continued extra activities from the Boomers, particularly forward Daniel Kickert, things just got out of control real quick.
Coach Chot mentioned an incident even before the game started as both teams apparently got into it during warm ups.
"I don't know if he was trying to get into our minds, if he was trying to start something," Reyes said of Kickert.
"I have no... whatever his motive is, there was no excuse for him doing what he did during the warm- up. Nakakita na ba kayo na tinira yung kalaban sa warm-up? Sa lay-up line? Hindi pa naguumpisa tinira na tayo. What do you expect us to do?" he added.
With the incident pre-game, Reyes said that they told their players to brush it off and focus on the game.
Regardless of the Pinoy's apparent focus, the Boomers started to break the game wide open in the second half.
And at the four-minute mark of the third period, things went south. After a physical sequence, RR Pogoy shoved Australia's Chris Goulding to the floor. That prompted Kickert to hit Pogoy, knocking him to the floor as well.
Almost immediately, Jayson Castro and Andray Blatche went after Kickert and the Gilas bench followed soon after.
In the end, a totoal of 13 players were ejected, nine from Gilas. The Philippines ended up losing by default.
Facing possible sanctions from FIBA, Reyes is ready to accept but he maintains Kickert had a huge role in all of it.
"I don't know. It's up to FIBA in the end. We need to face those consequences, it is what it is. One thing I know about this team is that we're not gonna back down. We already restrained the players before the game. We told them wag na pansinin," Reyes said.
"Then Kickert did all of those things at the start, sa warm-up line. We told them wag na pansinin, focus on the game. But you know, when he did that in th third quarter it was hard to restrain them anymore," he added.
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