MANILA, Philippines --- Barangay Ginebra coach Siot Tanquingcen's decision not to use one of his players during Sunday's game against B-Meg may cost him his job.
Tanquingcen benched rookie forward Dylan Ababou and this reportedly did not sit well with team officials who have now questioned his coaching credentials.
According to a source who is privy to management thinking, some team officials in the San Miguel sports echelons wondered how the coach could have missed using Ababou who is not in any way suffering from any injury.
The same source said Tanquingcen's failure to use Ababou was "uncacceptable." Some also used the word "mysterious."
Officials said losing to B-Meg was not a problem, it's the way Tanquingcen handled the team.
Under these circumstances, it's almost a given that Tanquingcen, who has won three PBA championships and was runnerup twice, is on the way out as the source who hinted about management's disappointment oftentimes uses the media to presage personnel movement involving players and coaches.
The source even mentioned some possible replacements such as assistant coach Marco Januz Sauler, and former Sta. Lucia Realty and Tanduay coach Alfrancis Chua.
When contacted yesterdayTanquingcen admitted that he lost track of the situation and also wondered how he could have missed using Ababou who played in Ginebra's 103-85 win versus Air21, where he played 23 minutes and scored nine points with three rebounds.
"I know it's not a popular decision, I actually asked myself why I didn't use him," said Tanquingcen.
But Tanquingcen justified his decision, citing the pressure some coaches face.
"Going into the game, you can only try to pick and chose the players you want to use. (And regarding my decisions, I have to ), live with it."
Tanquingcen explained that Ababou share playing minutes at the small forward position with fellow rookie Allein Maliksi and veteran Nino Canaleta, who played 16 and 18 minutes respectively against B-Meg finishing with seven points each.
In Ginebra's opening game versus Air21, Maliksi played 16 minutes with 13 points, while Canaleta was scoreless in eight minutes.
"Sometimes, the minutes of players get mixed up. Like our import Cedric Bozeman, he can play 1-2-3 positions. Mike Cortez plays the point guard but he can also play the 2. As much as I want to please all the players, that my dilemma, sometimes I can't do that."
Tanquingcen understands also that there's a possibility for him to be replaced, particularly if Ginebra fails to do well this conference.
"I've been in that position, so I know it can happen again. For me, I'll always try to do my best each game to help the team win. If management wants to replace me, that's not in my control anymore," said Tanquingcen.