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A Prodigal Coach


Another game day for Coach Aldin Ayo and his Green Archers. This time facing a former DLSU legendary coach in Franz Pumaren who’s been doing wonders so far for Adamson Falcons. What an interesting plot. Sure fun to watch!

But hey, there's a family movie viewing scheduled right after lunch. So I think Zootopia which runs almost two hours will still give me time to catch the game at about two in the afternoon. Of course I was never a Green Archer fan. Not until this fellow Sorsogon native took the spotlight last year. I cheered for Letran of course when sano Aldin got the coaching gig. But this Champion coach got poached and all of a sudden found his way to Taft. Aaah, I’ve always been grateful to the Jesuits for like forever and a day, and such move was—personally—a bitter green pill to swallow!

But of course how can I not support someone you’ve known since the heyday when you’re once called the “stouthearted boys” of Bibincahan!

Zootopia’s a very good movie. And my son kept teasing me that I am the ever-intense buffalo “Chief Bogo.” Fine, mirrors a lot about my parenting style, sucks sometimes, but at least I know. But no excuses, I just needed that reminder everyday to loosen up, right?

And oh, I totally forgot about the DLSU game.

It was already twilight of 3rd Quarter when I tuned in. And what was initially thought a tight contest between Coach Franz and his former team turned out otherwise. And I found myself watching the very exact sequence Twitter and the rest of social media was talking about that Saturday afternoon. Abu Tratter just had back-to-back turnovers notoriously deserving a Shaqtin’ A Fool nomination! While here comes the hulking coach as it were ready to pounce on his prey. Tratter knew what was coming. A tongue lashing. A suplex perhaps. Abu undeservingly felt his surname turning into a “Sayyaf” while a platoon of Navy Seals called Aldin Ayo surrounded him—ready to pulverize and exterminate right on terrorist ground by a flick of a finger.

But lo and behold! Aldin gave his player a horse bear hug!

What. Did. We. Just. See?

(Watch again that sweet moment here.)

Of course it felt very good. We all wanted to feel like how Tratter did in some shitty situations perhaps many times in our lives. Students longed for a professor on the friendlier side than scary. Or for parents like me to chill and be cool because it’s simply the best disposition to send a message across your children. How about a President who is compassionate, calm and gives second chances to sinners and recalcitrant? 

The name Aldin Ayo was trending up until almost midnight. And people didn’t really dwell much about how strong the Archers were and that they can just go muscle their way to the UAAP Season 79 Basketball crown. Filipinos were longing for such gentle and calm demeanor. THAT simple but compassionate and forgiving hug stood out in this country full of cursing, anger, violence, hurt, killing and what-have-you-AF! Of course, having known Aldin through the years, he too can breakdown and lose his cool in many a situation. But the thing is, we can always try to be nice, gentle and kind. And sure it’s going to make a big difference.

Oh man, it struck the “Chief Bogo” in me. I don’t know if the events of the day have been planned or designed to take place just like how they happened. I still can’t decipher how Zootopia and basketball make a great mix. But hey, I can’t help but be grateful for this grace!

About time, let’s hug-it-forward!

...follow @labapilipinas on twitter for more sports laundering!

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