UAAP 82: Coach Franz undergoes surgery before leading Adamson's gallant stand vs Ateneo

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 09, 2019 08:15 PM
Coach Franz undergoes surgery before coaching Adamson
(Photo by Arvin Lim)

Franz Pumaren vs Tab Baldwin was certain to be a coaching chess match.

Only, Pumaren almost didn't make it to Adamson University's matchup opposite Ateneo de Manila University, Wednesday at Araneta Coliseum.

"I had surgery yesterday for kidney stones," the multi-titled mentor told reporters after his Soaring Falcons bowed to the Blue Eagles. "I was on my way to practice then all of a sudden, I felt different. I couldn't bear the pain, it was so excruciating so they had to do the surgery right away."

Coach Franz was on his way to Adamson's training session at the Gatordade Hoops Center in Mandaluyong last Tuesday before feeling something wrong with his body.

From there, he headed to Medical City in Ortigas, but then had to be transferred to nearby Victor R. Potenciano Medical Center so that the surgery could be done right away.

The 55-year-old was discharged on the same day, but of course, was far from full strength as he and Adamson headed into a collision with the defending champions.

Still, he was very much present in the venue and was even seen in good spirits as he chatted with Ateneo tactician Tab Baldwin during warmups.

For that, Baldwin had nothing but respect for his bench rival. As he put it, "He had a tough night in the hospital. He's fine, but it was a courageous effort in his part to even be at the game."

He then continued, "So, I tip my hat off to him as a colleague and as a great competitor. I wish him a very, very speedy recovery."

Without a doubt, though, there was no way Pumaren was going to miss this game. "We just asked permission from my doctor because the main thrust is to show the team that I won't leave them in the heat of the battle," he said.

He then continued, "As a true leader, I don't want to leave them. As long as I can walk, I'll be showing up in games and practices."

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