MANILA, Philippines – Smart Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes called out Japeth Aguilar on Twitter Monday.
Reyes expressed his thoughts to Aguilar, who remains undecided on whether he would return to the Philippine Basketball Association or stay overseas to continue his NBA dreams, on the heels of Aguilar’s reported trade demands among other things.
“It’s not good to publicly demand to be traded, especially due to playing time, especially when your team just won the title. This smacks of selfishness,” posted Reyes, who goes by the Twitter handle @coachot.
The six-foot-nine Aguilar was close to playing with the Santa Cruz Warriors, an NBA Developmental League affiliate of the Golden State Warriors, but was unable to make its final roster.
Aguilar, selected first overall in the 2009 PBA Draft, last played in the PBA two seasons ago with Talk ‘N Text, which was then handled by Reyes.
Reyes wondered: “If you really want to play, why go to NBA/NBDL? You think you can play a lot there? You played 20 minutes per game in your last all-Filipino stint. This not enough?”
“Son, playing time is earned, not demanded/expected. Wanna play at crunchtime? Work so hard your coach can’t afford to sit you. If he does, work anyway!”
Reyes went on and praised Aguilar, saying that the former Western Kentucky Hilltopper, is ‘the most physically gifted Pinoy baller ever.’
“But why didn’t you play at Western Kentucky? At Gilas? In NBDL? It’s the coaches’ fault? Think about it,” Reyes continued. “I have nothing to gain whatever you decide except I want what’s best for you. Come home son. Make your name here. This is where you belong.”
“So come on, play 8 or 48 minutes, get your ass kicked, dunk on somebody but do it here. And know what ever happens, I will be behind you always.”
Despite Aguilar’s struggles in the PBA, he remains to be a valuable asset with his athleticism, length and potential.
Just last month, Reyes invited the former Ateneo Blue Eagle to join the National team in the Dubai Invitational also in a tweet.
“Since you’re not with any (NBA D-League) team, why not come home, practice with Gilas and play with us in Dubai? I think it will be good for you.”
The 25-year-old Aguilar, who accepted the Santa Cruz Warriors’ offer to be a practice player, replied: “Thanks coach for considering me. I will definitely think about it.”
Talk ‘N Text, which won its third straight Philippine Cup title recently, still hold Aguilar’s playing rights.