Monday, June 09, 2014. Columbian Autocar Corporation (Kia) officially announced Manny Pacquiao as their expansion team’s PBA head coach in a press conference held at the Pacific Star Building in Makati.
The iconic Filipino boxing champion and Congressman will be Kia’s head coach for the next PBA season in October. The announcement was made with CAC Chairman and Palawan Governor Honorable Jose Ch. Alvarez, PBA Commissioner Angelito Salud, CAC president Ginia Domingo, and Kia Team Manager Eric Pineda.
In the press conference, Congressman Pacquiao said that he was thankful to be named as Kia’s head coach.
“Pasalamat ako at nakuha akong head coach ng Kia. ‘Yan ay malaking karangalan para sa akin” (“I’m thankful to be named head coach of Kia. It’s a great honor”), Cong. Pacquiao said.
Cong. Pacquiao also shared that he really loves basketball. He claimed that even though he had a huge success in boxing, the game of basketball still remained in his heart.
“Talagang napahilig ako sa basketball, kahit na marami na ako na-accomplish sa boxing nandyan pa rin sa puso ko ang basketball” (“I really love basketball, even though I had a lot of accomplishments in boxing, basketball still remained in my heart”), Cong. Pacquiao added.
Being a boxer, a Congressman and now a PBA head coach, Pacquiao was asked on how he can balance his time. “Just time management and self-discipline,” he replied.
In the past weeks, reports stated that Cong. Pacquiao will be acting as a playing coach but, the Congressman said that in the meantime he will only focus on coaching. He also said that his current goal is to get quality, talented players.
PBA Commisioner Angelico Salud tackled on what Cong. Pacquiao can bring to the league.
“Of course there’s the wow factor, there’s the point of interest, pulling power of Manny Pacquiao. But I want to emphasize that Manny is the embodiment of what the PBA is striving to stand for. And what is that? Highest degree of excellence and sportsmanship with regard to fan and public interest,” Salud said.