MANILA, Philippines – Phoenix Pulse coach Topex Robinson feels blessed to be given the chance to call the shots for the Fuel Masters, following the suspension of head coach Louie Alas in the PBA Commissioner's Cup.
Alas was given a two-game ban following his "flagrant misconduct" in their loss to TNT KaTropa last June 2, which saw him ejected just three minutes into the contest along with three players.
In his stead, Robinson stepped in as coach for their games against Meralco and Rain or Shine – both of which resulted in losses for the Fuel Masters. They bowed to the Bolts, 101-95, then faded away down the stretch against the Elasto Painters, 89-82.
Still, even as he went 0-2, Robinson was grateful for the experience.
"That's a blessing for me," he said of filling in the shoes of Alas.
"There's room for growth, and I'm just savoring this opportunity," he added. "There's so much to learn."
Robinson compared the experience to enrolling in a coaching clinic. "I'm just thankful for the opportunity," he stressed.
There were some instances when Robinson's inexperience came into play, such as the fourth quarter of their game against Rain or Shine last Sunday, when he was called for a technical foul for entering the court.
"We make mistakes, referees made a mistake, I made a mistake," he said of the incident. "We have to move forward."
What matters for Robinson is that he, along with the whole Phoenix team, took something away from the experience.
"Obviously, everybody wanted, I mean, I wanted to win that game but you don't get what you always want for," said Robinson. "But as long as you learn from it, I'm happy with it."
The Fuel Masters will welcome back Alas on Saturday, when they take on the Alaska Aces.
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