April 14, 2024

Tim Cone gets honest about Kevin Quiambao’s potential and role for Gilas

Tim Cone gets honest about Kevin Quiambao’s potential and role for Gilas
Photo (c) PSC & FIBA

Tim Cone’s vision for Gilas Pilipinas is clear—a mix of veterans and youth capable of delivering results for the national team.

Aside from the PBA stars that Gilas fans have come to know and love, many are also excited to see the much-improved Kevin Quiambao on the team.

[ALSO READ: Kevin Quiambao leads brand-new Gilas Pilipinas pool under coach Tim Cone]

Quiambao, who bagged the UAAP Season 86 MVP and Finals MVP, also impressed many during his recent stint for the Strong Group Athletics in the 33rd Dubai International Basketball Tournament.

“Ironically, I was just talking to Kevin a couple of hours ago on the phone cause he had just gotten back from Dubai and his tournament there. I was telling him that right now you are the young guys on the team and that was what we wanted. We wanted vets and youth,” Cone shared in an interview on One News’ The Big Story.

“I'm a big believer that you don't get better unless you have younger players who could grow and get better as a team, however, if you want to win now, if you want to win right away, you need veterans, so that's kind of the combination that we've tried to put together,” he emphasized.

For Cone, it’s clear that the development of Quiambao and the other young guys in Gilas such as Kai Sotto, AJ Edu, and Carl Tamayo will be key to Gilas’ success in the years to come.

“I was telling Kevin, you're the young guy right now, but in four years, you aren't gonna be the young guy anymore, so he's gonna be four years older, four years smarter,” said Cone.

“He's gonna be playing international ball for four years along with wherever he goes, whether it be the PBA or Japan or who knows maybe the New York Knicks. He will grow through those four years and that's the idea of getting a young player like that,” he added.

Of course, the winningest coach in the PBA also spoke fondly of Quiambao and what he could bring to the table for Gilas.

“This kid is versatile. He asked me on the phone, am I gonna play three or four, coach? I said, 'Kevin, you're gonna play one, two, three, or four, wherever we need you because you have that versatility in your game and we can use you wherever we need you to be,” said Cone.

It's safe to say that KQ will have a much bigger role in Gilas this time around.