Hodge downplays spat with Cone, says ‘it’s part of the game’
Tempers flared between Meralco and Ginebra, one of the budding rivarlies in the league, in their the PBA Commissioner’s Cup match.
The game was marred with scuffles here and there like the minor ruckus between Meralco’s Anjo Caram and Ginebra’s LA Tenorio and the exchange between Mark Caguioa and Cliff Hodge when the former hit the latter in the face for a Flagrant 1 foul.
But nothing compared to when Ginebra head coach Tim Cone had a heated confrontation with Hodge midway through the third quarter of the Bolts’ 93-82 win.
Cone blew his top over what he thought was a goaltending violation by Meralco center Arinze Onuaku on Justin Brownlee’s shot attempt.
Meralco, which had ever trailed the whole game, was holding a 56-47 lead at that point and had already irked Ginebra because of its defense.
The missed call led to Cone charging the court and ultimately confronting Hodge. The multi-titled coach was called with a technical foul for his actions.
“He got on the court and I just told him to get off the court and that’s pretty much it,” said Hodge Friday at Mall of Asia Arena. “I was like [talking to the referees] ‘hey he’s not supposed to be on the court’ so I told him to get off the court. Then he got mad at me because I told him that.”
Hodge, though, downplayed the incident as just a normal occurrence that frustrations bring to a game.
“It’s part of the game, I know he was kind of frustrated.”
“We really don’t see each other often but if he wants to talk to me he can,” said Hodge who had four points and four rebounds in the game. “Honestly it’s just part of the game and I think he’s probably thinking the same thing. No one takes it personally after the game is over.”
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