JAWO IN DEAL TO CO-OWN MBA TEAM
Manila, Jan. 10, 1999 - Senator Robert Jaworski is reported by the Philippine Daily Inquirer to be in the thick of negotiations with giant television network ABS-CBN, allegedly working out a deal for Jaworski to co-own a team in the Metropolitan Basketball Association. ABS-CBN virtually controls the MBA.
''I won't say they're close to inking a deal but at this stage, they are talking about a Jaworski transfer to the MBA,'' said an MBA team owner who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Jaworski left the PBA's Ginebra San Miguel team as playing coach over disagreement when he was not consulted about the hiring of a second playing coach.
The basketball legend, who won a seat in the Senate because of his popularity in the sport, had earlier been reported in serious discussions with other PBA teams. However, Sta. Lucia, the PBA team that had earlier shown interest in getting Jaworski as head coach announced that Adonis Tierra has been signed finally as the head coach of the Sta. Lucia Realtors.
At least 16 PBA players have already migrated--or at least been finalizing plans to move--to the MBA. The Inquirer's source said that aside from those who have already transferred to the league's initial season last year, big names from the PBA are on their way to the MBA to pursue more lucrative deals.
Already signed up with their respective teams were former Pop Cola center Bonel Balingit with the San Juan Knights and former Purefoods forward Bong Ravena with the Pasig-Rizal Blue Pirates.
Purefoods' Ulysses Tanigue, Mobiline's Lowell Briones and Gabby Cui, Purefoods' Bong Solomon and Formula Shell's Rommel Santos are also certain to see action in the MBA's second season. Tanigue will go to Pangasinan, Briones to Pasig-Rizal, Cui to Pampanga and Solomon and Santos to Davao.
Expected to follow suit are Shell's Romy de la Rosa with the Negros Slashers, Ginebra San Miguel's Vince Hizon, who is close to forging an agreement with the Iloilo Voltz, and Dudut Jaworski also with San Juan.
Marlou Aquino is being courted by the Pangasinan Presidents, with big businessmen offering to shoulder his monthly salary of P500,000.
Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi
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