Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao treated his impending 2016 election defeat to incoming Pampanga First district congressman Carmelo “Jon Jon” Lazatin II like a basketball game.
Based on the unofficial Comelec count as of 4:43 p.m. of Tuesday, Guiao was down by more than 23,000 votes to Lazatin, whose father, Carmelo Lazatin Sr., was a former congressman.
The multi-titled PBA coach said the impending defeat was made possible by the INC (Iglesia ni Cristo) votes. But he had no problems with that, saying such loss is part of political life.
“Siguro blessing pa rin yun (election loss). But it’s also a blessing that I was able to serve during my term,” Guiao told FOX Sports after conducting the team’s practice on Tuesday morning at the Nega gym in San Juan where his team prepared for Game 3.
“Parang basketball lang iyan. It’s just part of the game.”
Guiao’s political opponent used to serve as a city councilor in 1995 before becoming am executive assistant from 1998 to 2007.
The Rain or Shine mentor believes he’ll just have to move on from there, knowing that he’s got his supportive family at his back, a PBA team to lead to a championship in the ongoing Oppo-PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals, along with a small business to attend to.
“Definitely, mapapahinga ka dahil mave-vacant ka for 3 years. So it’s a good break at mare-relieve ka from tensions, from stress and from responsibilities (as congressman),” explained Guiao, a 3-term Pampanga vice governor before.
“But then, this will also give me time to focus on basketball since matagal na din kaming di nagcha-champion, mga 4 years na rin and also more time for my family and attend to our small business,” he added.
“It (winning a championship) would be a good present for the team owners because they have been patient.”
Guiao managed to steer Rain or Shine to its first and so far, only PBA championship during the 2012 Governors Cup.
Since then, Rain or Shine has finished runner-up in its 3 most recent trips to the Finals.
Guiao and his boys though will be shooting for no less than a commanding 3-0 bulge on Wednesday against Alaska when they resume their Commissioner’s Cup Finals hostilities at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. – By Richard Dy
Follow this writer on Twitter: @richava