By Jonas Terrado
TNT KaTropa management said the team decided to let Tab Baldwin focus on his role with Ateneo and Gilas Pilipinas even before he came under fire for comments made in a video podcast two weeks ago.
News came out on Thursday that Baldwin had been relieved of his duties as part of the TNT coaching staff in the aftermath of the remarks he made on PBA policies on imports and officiating while describing local coaches as “tactically immature.”
But Gabby Cui, team manager of both TNT and Gilas, explained the change was already made even before the government imposed a community quarantine in mid-March. He added that the team is already doing well under the stewardship of coach Bong Ravena and active consultant Mark Dickel.
“Coach Tab will be focusing on his coaching chores in Ateneo and his role in (Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas). We decided on this transition way before the lockdown,” Cui said on Thursday, confirming rumors of Baldwin’s departure from TNT.
“The team is adapting well to the system of Coach Bong Ravena and Team Consultant Mark Dickel. We would like to thank Coach Tab and wish him well,” added Cui.
Baldwin has since apologized but insisted his remarks were “taken out of context.”
Despite being out of the TNT staff, Cui seems to suggest that Baldwin will be able to retain his position as coach of Ateneo and as program director of Gilas Pilipinas where he has a more active role.
But there’s still speculations as to whether the comments may affect his tenure with Gilas and the Blue Eagles, the three-time reigning UAAP champions.