Tim Cone says Tex Winter 'made me the coach that I am today'

Tim Cone on Tex Winter (0:39)

The PBA's all-time winningest coach, Tim Cone, honored Hall of Fame coach and pioneer of the triangle offense, Tex Winter, who passed away on Thursday. (0:39)

Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone took time to honor legendary American coach Tex Winter, who died on Thursday.

The 60-year-old Cone credited Winter for the influence he had on his career as a coach.

"I'm so saddened by the passing of Tex Winter. He was a tremendous coach and teacher. He will always be remembered for the Triangle Offense, but to me his impact on the game was so much more than just that," Cone said in a statement to SportsCenter Philippines.

"He shaped and honed my career and made me the coach that I am today."

Cone, the PBA's winningest coach with 21 titles to date, said one question he always ask himself is, "Would Tex be proud of the way I am going about things?"

"I hope that answer is always yes. I will miss him dearly," shared the Ginebra mentor, who describes himself on his official Twitter account as a "Tex Winter protege".

Winter, a former Kansas State University coach, is best remembered for winning six NBA titles while serving as Phil Jackson's assistant with the Chicago Bulls during the Michael Jordan era in the 1990s.

His trademark triangle offense served as the cornerstone of Jackson's coaching success with the Bulls.

Upon Jordan's retirement with the Bulls, Winter joined Jackson in Los Angeles, winning three more NBA titles with the Lakers from 2000 to 2002.

He was inducted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011. The following year, Winter was elected to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.