SMC president on Cone's transfer: 'I think we gave in to fans' request'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — San Miguel Corp. (SMC) President Ramon Ang confirmed on Tuesday (July 21) the move that sent coach Tim Cone to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel from the Star Hotshots.

Read: SMC big boss confirms Cone's transfer to Ginebra - report

Ang said the decision that stunned the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) was actually in response to Ginebra fans' request.

"I think we just gave in to the request of the fans na siya (Cone) naman ang mag-coach," Ang told a small group of reporters during the victory of the San Miguel Beermen, who captured their 21st championship after sweeping Alaska in the recently-concluded Governors' Cup.

Cone, who steered Star Hotshots to a Grand Slam two seasons ago, is left with the daunting task of propping up the Gin Kings' sagging fortunes in the league. Ginebra has not won a title in seven seasons.

"Hindi ko alam kung anong gagawin niya (Cone) so we'll just hope na ma-gel niya yung team at makapagbigay ng magandang results," Ang said.

Still, while he gave the winningest coach in PBA history his vote of confidence, he is not expecting a smooth transition.

"In basketball, you cannot be sure of anything, bilog yung bola e. No one can be sure of anything," he said, citing the Beermen's sudden fall after their Philippine Cup conquest.

As for the team that Cone left in the hands of his understudy, Jason Webb, Ang said he is hoping for positive results.

"Of course we always hope na all our teams will do well pero hindi naman natin matitiyak yun. We can only hope," he said.