TNT Coach Unfazed by Magnolia's PBA on Tour Dominance
Jojo Lastimosa, TNT’s team manager and head coach, is undeterred by Magnolia’s flawless 11-0 record in the previous PBA on Tour exhibition series and is looking forward to the forthcoming PBA Season 48 premiere on November 5. The dramatic disparity in the two teams’ records during the PBA on Tour is not a reason for concern, according to Lastimosa, who underlines that exhibition games and the regular season are two completely distinct creatures.
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“It’s 11-0 on Tour.” When asked about the gap between the two teams’ preseason records during a recent PBA Media Day interview, Lastimosa said, “Kami 1-10 nung Tour.” “They were out to win that Tour,” he continued. You could tell, Kami naman, that our lineup comprised collegiate players and some men who didn’t have much playing time. We wanted to instill trust in them.”
Lastimosa’s point of view is straightforward: the PBA on Tour is a development platform for some of the league’s younger and less experienced players, aiming to boost their confidence and give them vital playing time. TNT and Magnolia know the exhibition series is separate from the demanding regular season.
“The Tour is not like the regular season. We are aware of this, as are they (Magnolia). This is when the real competition begins. It isn’t the Tour. The Tour is similar to a broadcast outdoor game. “We didn’t get any bonuses,” Lastimosa said. “I’m just telling it like it is,” he continued. However, the real season begins on November 5, so we’ll see what happens.”
Despite emphasizing the distinctions between the preseason and regular season, Lastimosa underlined that he has no intention of undermining Magnolia’s extraordinary 11-0 performance. He admitted that their preseason performance may have some significance that may carry over into their Season 48 campaign.
“I’m not saying the 11-0 is meaningless. Perhaps there is. “Perhaps there aren’t any,” Lastimosa concluded.
TNT confronts a tough battle against Magnolia in the PBA Season 48 opening, especially with a depleted team that includes key players such as Mikey Williams, Roger Pogoy, and Poy Erram. Nonetheless, the return of Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, who helped the squad win the Governors’ Cup last season, adds a spark to their possibilities. TNT is ready to offer its all as they look to start the regular season strong.