"Whenever it’s me versus him, he wants to beat me so bad."
Tim Cone is the winningest coach in the PBA for a reason. And in delivering Gilas Pilipinas' redemption in the 2019 Asian Games, Meralco Bolts guard Chris Newsome has plenty of reasons to take notes.
He'll be learning for a long time as Cone was confirmed as the official head coach, as Gilas Pilipinas prepares for the FIBA Asia Cup 2025 Qualifiers.
[ALSO READ: "12 of the best" | Cone wants new Gilas to grow and win together]
Newsome shared how Cone's skill as a coach shows even in the smallest things.
"Coach Tim is all about the details. It’s really about the details, it comes down to even simple drills that he runs," the guard shared on Pilipinas Live's Starting Lineup.
"It can be a very simple drill but there’s so much details that goes on behind that drill. Things such as how you catch the ball, which foot you’re going to pivot with that’s going to set you up for this pass or this counter step," he explained.
"He really goes into details about those things but it’s just a simple pass or hand-off drill and pass back drill but he really puts into emphasis on those things."
One of the most significant aspects of Newsome's development under Coach Cone has been his understanding of the finer nuances of basketball, especially when the Philippines ended its 61-year gold medal drought in Asian Games men’s basketball.
Newsome also shared how the national team coach focuses on the technical aspects.
"It makes sense because if you can't have much detail into that imagine trying to scheme together a whole game plan and that’s what he loves to do. He finds out the weaknesses and strengths of other teams and how he’s going to scheme to the finest details to make you uncomfortable," the guard said.
"That’s what I learned from Coach Tim. He’s great at that and he really understands and dissects the game like nobody I’ve ever really interacted with," he added.
It only makes sense that the winningest coach in the PBA likes a bit of contest.
"The interesting thing about Coach Tim is he’s one of the most competitive people I’ve ever met," Newsome shared.
"Yes, he might be nice to me off the court but whenever it’s me versus him, he wants to beat me so bad. If he were to lose to us, he will be genuinely mad which shows the true competitor that he truly is," the Meralco Bolts stalwart said.
"I love Coach Tim and competing against him, I see a lot of my qualities of myself in him and I hope it’s mutual that he sees the same qualities within me and that's why he chose me to be part of the team. It’s an honor and it’s going to be fun."
Newsome will be joining the Gilas Pilipinas’ lineup under Coach Tim Cone alongside PBA stars Scottie Thompson, Calvin Oftana, CJ Perez, Jamie Malonzo, and June Mar Fajardo.
They will be reinforced by Japan B.League imports Dwight Ramos, AJ Edu, Carl Tamayo, and Kai Sotto, along with naturalized player Justin Brownlee.
They will be working towards the action for the FIBA Asia Cup 2025 Qualifiers this month and the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in July.