Social media blackout for Ateneo players during UAAP Finals

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Dec 03, 2018 07:05 PM
Social media blackout for Ateneo players during UAAP Finals
Matt Nieto and Ateneo's eyes are on the prize - back-to-back championships now in UAAP 81

Ateneo de Manila University is one win away from back-to-back championships.

Of course, just about everybody wants to have idea about the thoughts and the feelings of the Blue Eagles on defending their title.

Only, the defending champions themselves won’t be the ones to be sharing those thoughts and those feelings.

As it turns out, the Ateneo coaching staff has imposed a so-called social media blackout on their players so that they will be able to drown out the noise from one of the most anticipated Finals in recent memory. “It’s not us being KJ (killjoy), but we just want our players to focus because we all know that we got a tough task ahead of us,” assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga revealed following their Game 1 win last Saturday.

This is not the first time this has happened as in their title run a season ago, the Blue Eagles were also told to shy away from social media. “We did this also last year so we can avoid any distractions to our players. It’s not that we want to be killjoys or whatever so I apologize, but this is a big task for us,” coach Sandy said.

Indeed, the last post on Twitter by Thirdy Ravena was last November 22 while Matt Nieto’s was last November 15.

The same goes for Instagram where Ravena hasn’t posted since November 22 and Nieto has gone silent since November 14.

Just like last year, the defending champions are doing this because they aren’t taking their opponents lightly. As their assistant coach said, “UP has proven that they’re not an easy opponent so we don’t want to get distracted from our mission which is now Wednesday’s game.”

He then continued, “Actually, not Wednesday’s game, but this game – we’re going to watch it, we’re going to see our mistakes, and we’re going to come up with a game plan.”

Once more, Coach Sandy reiterated that the so-called social media blackout just proves how laser-focused Ateneo is as it tries to win it all anew. “That’s how serious we are. We just didn’t want our players didn’t get distracted so sorry for that,” he said.

In the meantime, the always amiable assistant coach said there is no so-called social media blackout on his end. “You can just call me. I can be distracted,” he joked.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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