MANILA, Philippines – Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin didn’t hesitate when asked about his players’ scoring production in the Blue Eagles’ final loss in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament.
Mason Amos top scored for the Blue Eagles with 12 points, but the defending league champions bowed out to Adamson in their second loss of the season against a win on Saturday.
That loss was the bigger picture for Baldwin. Don’t pay attention to the team’s point production.
“Some guys care about points, but I don’t care what the points are,” said the veteran tactician.
“In fact, I carry this thing (stat sheet) around and we barely look at it. We have our own statistics based on analytics and that means so much more. For you to see this and see the names on top and think they played a great game, maybe they did, maybe they didn’t.”
Kai Ballungay aided the rookie in scoring with 10 markers, while Chris Koon and Lebron Nieto spread nine points each in the loss.
All of the Blue Eagles’ contributions on the offensive end were for naught as Vince Magbuhos hit a buzzer-beating triple in overtime to take the 74-71 victory. He finished with 11 points.
As far as Baldwin is concerned, the final count is all that matters.
“The point total that matters is at the bottom. That’s all I care about. This stat sheet rarely reflects performance.”
Baldwin, a former Gilas head coach, also used the Philippines’ gold medal game against Jordan as an example on Friday evening.
He said not all of Gilas’ efforts were quantified in the paper, but after 61 years they still achieved the nation’s first gold in men’s basketball.
Of course, Baldwin also had to praise his former player Ange Kouame.
“Again, get back here and you can throw this damn thing away for that match. That game was all about strength and defense… Ange Kouame, given the minutes he got, controlled the paint.”