Although Gilas Pilipinas was dealt a big blow by the injury that forced shooter RR Pogoy out of action in next week's Southeast Asian Games, coach Tim Cone expressed confidence there's enough ammo to get the job done.
"We can still put a really good shooting team out there if we want to. And, we've still got a lot of versatility in our line-up. Point guards are really strong. So we feel good about where we are," said Cone.
He expects to get perimeter shooting from LA Tenorio, Marcio Lassiter, Matthew Wright, Stanley Pringle, and Troy Rosario in the Dec. 4-10 Games.
Pogoy was part of Cone's "Final 12" and his exit due to back injury opened the doors for anyone among Greg Slaughter, Scottie Thompson and Arthur dela Cruz, to catch the last bus to the SEAG.
Cone said they're still weighing things before deciding who to name as replacement for the injured Pogoy during the team managers' meeting on Dec. 3.
"At this point, it's obviously going to be Greg, Scottie or Art because those are the guys that we have and have been with us and are doing the work, know the system and everything," he said.
With the PBA Governors' Cup quarterfinals over, Gilas mainstays have shifted their full attention to the SEAG mission.
They got together for a session last Thursday and started twice-a-week practices yesterday in the leadup to their opening game against Singapore on Nov. 4.
Cone said they requested to be excused from attending Saturday's SEA Games opening ceremonies in Bulacan so they can use the time to get more practices in.
"All the athletes in the Games have had a year or more to prepare for this tournament, for the SEA Games, and we basically have a week and we cannot afford to have less time off our practice," he explained.
The Gilas mentor raised the possibility of the national cage team personally cheering their fellow athletes from other sports during their competition break on Dec. 5 and 8. (OL)