Chot Reyes steps down as Gilas Pilipinas head coach

Vincent "Chot" Reyes is stepping down as head coach of Gilas Pilipinas.

In a statement to ESPN5 on Tuesday, Reyes said he is resigning from the post and will contribute in a different capacity.

"I came out of retirement to coach Gilas because MVP [SBP chairman emeritus Manny V. Pangilinan] asked me back in October 2016. Amid my growing responsibilities in [TV5] and other big projects, I accepted, because I have complete trust in MVP's judgment and more importantly because it was an opportunity to serve the country," Reyes said in the statement. Reyes is also President and CEO of TV5 Network and Media5.

"We have long worked for full support from all of Philippine basketball's major stakeholders -- from Coach Rajko Toroman's time to my stint in 2013 to 2014, then Coach Tab Baldwin, until my current tenure. Now that the PBA has opened its doors fully to the SBP [Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas] and the national team, it is time for me to step aside and contribute in a different capacity, focusing on the 2023 program."

SBP president Al Panlilio in a statement thanked Reyes for his services.

"The SBP wishes to thank Chot Reyes for his dedication and service to the national team," Panlilio said. "We appreciate all the sacrifices you have given for the sake of flag and country. Thank you very much! Puso!!!"

Reyes' first stint as national team head coach was in 2005, steering the Philippine team to a fifth-place finish in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup and third place in the William Jones Cup. He was also at the helm when the Philippines competed in the 2007 FIBA Asia Championship, just months after the SBP had been formed.

His most notable accomplishment during his time with Gilas was winning silver in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship which earned the Philippines a slot in the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain. He left the national team in 2014, after the Asian Games in Incheon, Korea, but returned as head coach in 2016, replacing Baldwin. He helped Gilas Pilipinas win the SEABA tournament in 2017 and is responsible for leading the national squad to a 4-2 record in the ongoing FIBA World Cup qualifiers.

In the aftermath of the July 2 brawl between Gilas and Australia at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan, Reyes was fined and suspended by FIBA for one game. The SBP tapped Yeng Guiao to take over the head coaching duties for the Asian Games and the first game of the fourth window of the World Cup Asian qualifiers.

Gilas Pilpinas will face Iran on September 13 in Tehran before facing Qatar in Manila on September 17.

"Together with all the players and coaches who have sacrificed and put their careers on the line for flag and country, we wish coach Yeng and the current team great success, as they continue the World Cup journey. We are with you. Once Gilas, always Gilas," Reyes said in the statement.

Reyes helped the Philippine basketball squad win a bronze medal in the 2014 FIBA Asia Cup and gold in the 2012 William Jones Cup. Outside of his achievements with the national team, he is an eight-time PBA champion coach and a five-time Coach of the Year awardee.