Fred and Tim | Inquirer Sports

Fred and Tim

/ 02:11 AM October 19, 2011

As I sat and watched the Alaska-B Meg game with my youngest son Gabriel, who was an Alaska fan and is about to switch sides, I couldn’t help but think of both Fred Uytengsu and Tim Cone.
Though I have neither seen nor spoken to either of them for quite a long time, from the few conversations I’ve had with both, it seemed that we shared a vision on how a basketball team ought to be run.
So the events that have transpired over the past few weeks have been quite difficult for me to digest.
As I watched Fred say on national TV that after a 22-year partnership that won the team thirteen titles, he was surprised to learn that Tim wanted out, I realized that perhaps even visions in common are not written in stone.
What made it even more difficult for me to digest was that Tim asked to be relieved from a “live” contract from a friend who has to my knowledge given him full support within the boundaries stipulated by the league.
I know of Tim’s minor battles within the Alaska organization, but thanks to the support of Fred, he won most of them.
* * *
The coach of every team is perennially under the gun—from the owners who want to win as many championships as possible, and from the players who hold the coach “hostage” by the level of commitment they give on the floor in each game they play.
There are owners who give their full blanket support to their coaches and management staff. I believe Tim enjoyed this in his relationship with Fred.
In some other teams, there are also, in addition to the owners, corporate hierarchies that the coach has to deal with.
I have been coach to teams under both conditions, wherein I had to dance to both kinds of music.
From my experience, the first situation is the dream of any coach.
* * *
It is the dream of every coach to win as many championships and, in fairness to Tim, perhaps this was no longer possible with the salary cap stipulated by the PBA that Alaska has chosen to strictly follow. This limits the team’s ability to keep players and acquire new ones.
* * *
To Fred as a sportsman and team owner, you have had my highest respect and admiration in the way you have run your team.
Knowing that you were awarded the very prestigious Ernst &Young Entrepreneur of the Year some time ago shows me the consistency of your values in how you run your team and organization. You are not just about profit, you’re not just all about winning at all costs. You value people. You value building people. You value relationships. And it is leaders like you that our countrymen can draw inspiration from.
More power to you!!!
(Send comments to [email protected])



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TAGS: Alaska Aces, Basketball, BMEG Llamados, Fred Uytengsu, PBA, Sports, Tim Cone
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