MANILA, Philippines – Todd Purves’ official title with the San Miguel Beermen is “coaching consultant” but he plans to take a more active role in the SMB bench in the upcoming PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
“I’ll be calling timeouts, making subs,” Purves said in an interview with Joaquin Henson of The Philippine Star.
But this does not mean that he will be completely taking over from Biboy Ravanes, who was tabbed as the new SMB head coach when Gee Abanilla was elevated to team manager.
“It will still be a collective effort,” he assured. “I love Biboy, I don’t want to diminish his role one bit. I’ll handle the clip board, but we’ll run a democracy.”
The former Indonesia Warriors head coach said he will even welcome inputs from the players.
“I enjoy interaction, and welcome inputs from all the coaches and players. I’m no drill sergeant,” he said. “I’m more of a teacher. I’m into creating relationships and putting the players in a position where they can succeed.”
The pressure is higher than usual for the Beermen this season, as they are taking back the legendary “San Miguel Beer” name after competing as the Petron Blaze Boosters in the past few conferences.
They are also aiming to bounce back after a sputtering end to their campaign in the PBA Philippine Cup, which saw them get eliminated in the semi-finals.
Purves said that they will hold the players accountable for this, some more than others.
“Everyone is treated equally in our team. I realize some will play bigger roles than others. So we might be harder on someone like June Mar (Fajardo), who’s expected to do a lot more,” he said.
He is also looking forward to working with the team’s new players, Sol Mercado and Rico Maeirhofer, who were acquired in a trade that saw Alex Cabagnot leave the team.
“(Sol and I are) both from Sacramento, and I know his mentor, Gus Armstead, who is a good friend of mine,” he revealed. “Another new guy, Rico, everyone loves. He’s a hard worker, coachable, defense-oriented.”
“I’m trying to develop a deep personal relationship with all the guys,” he said.