From tapping a resident import, reeling in one more big man and a point guard, to holding a training camp that runs nonstop until the next Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) season, Aldin Ayo sure has a lot planned for Converge.
So detailed, even, are the plans that the rookie PBA coach himself hopes would be enough to quiet the chatter about him leaving the young club.
“I found a home here with this team,” Ayo said on the heels of a 121-105 quarterfinal loss to San Miguel that sent the promising FiberXers home early yet again.
“This is already the PBA—the highest level of basketball here. And I have quite the bosses, too. I’ve nothing more to say [other than] I am grateful for this opportunity,” he added.
Speculations of Ayo leaving Converge after this season made rounds on social media even before the club finished its Governors’ Cup campaign. Some have put the young coach looking to ply his trade overseas, while others theorized a transfer to a wealthier PBA club.
Ayo, appointed to the Converge saddle in August of last year, knew that talk about his future plans was bound to happen, considering his short stints with Letran, La Salle and University of Santo Tomas at the varsity level.
“I know the history of my career [shows me] moving from one team to another. But I think I’ve found a team and a management that’s easy [to work with],” he said.
A rookie this season, Ayo steered Converge to two playoff appearances. The FiberXers compiled an 8-4 win-loss record in the Commissioner’s Cup, then a 6-5 mark in the ongoing Governors’ Cup.
Those runs were built on little prep time. So Ayo thinks Converge can do better with longer planning.
“That’s what I’m really excited about,” he said of the long PBA offseason that will run for about seven months due to the Fiba (International Basketball Federation) World Cup.
“That’s always been the issue for us here in Converge. Time. Now, we’re going to get that much, we’ll just have to make sure to grab every opportunity to improve our players individually.”