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LEARNING PROCESS FOR BALIK-PBA MENTOR

Coach Boyet Fernandez (10-24-14)

It has been four years since Boyet Fernandez last stood on the sidelines of a PBA game as a head coach.

A proven winner, with his last PBA title coming in the 2007-08 Philippine Cup with Sta. Lucia, Fernandez is fresh from steering San Beda to a five-peat in the NCAA.

Two days separated from that conquest, a new challenge was waiting for the soft-spoken coach. He was at the Big Dome Friday, on the sidelines steering NLEX in its inaugural season in the PBA.

Unfortunately, Talk n Text spoiled his return to the big league as the Texters ripped his Road Warriors, 103-81.

But Fernandez took full responsibility in the defeat, saying, “I told the boys, this loss is on me. They have nothing to be ashamed of. It’s on me.”

Building a team with players he is quite familiar with, especially those who came from the D-League and the NCAA, Fernandez is positive of the dividends that they will reap in the long run.

“I hope the management will be patient with me. I know I’ve won championships but this is a different league. I’m just a rookie, I’m coming back, and I’m learning new things,” he said.

Fernandez wants his wards to learn from the gaffes they committed in the losing cause against TNT.

“There’s so many things to check,” he said. “This is a team that’s a work in progress everyday so we take it one game at a time. This loss will probably give us a very good lesson in preparation for our next games.”

And he also hopes he has learned his lessons for their next games.

“Probably, I need more time to acclimatize myself to the PBA.” (RL)

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