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OPINION

Cholo hopes to become No. 1

Year 2022 was promising, but Villanueva wants to begin the new year as a champion.

Year 2022 was indeed a big year for Cholo Villanueva’s coaching career.

From the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League to the Universities Athletic Association of the Philippines all the way to the Philippine Basketball Association, Villanueva has steered and helped the teams he’s involved with to championship appearances.

In the MPBL, he guided the Batangas City to the Southern Division Finals before eventually losing to the Zamboanga in the National Finals.

Villanueva also brought his winning act to the UAAP.

His team, De La Salle University, emerged as the first team to stop the 108-game winning streak of National University in the UAAP women’s basketball tournament.

Although the Lady Archers snapped the perfect run of the Lady Bulldogs, Villanueva and his troops could only place second.

A string of bridesmaid finishes. Second best. Runner-up places.

Villanueva hopes he could end it and be a part of a champion team when visiting Bay Area tries to become the first foreign squad in 42 years to win a PBA title.

Signs are really encouraging for the Dragons, who are facing crowd favorite Barangay Ginebra San Miguel for the best-of-seven championship of the Commissioner’s Cup, which starts on Christmas Day.

Villanueva serves as one of the assistant coaches of Brian Goorjian and the Filipino mentor was a big part of the team’s successful run in the mid-season, import-laced tournament.

Villanueva’s familiarity with the PBA style of play has been a big help for Goorjian in getting the Dragons more equipped to compete against the best teams in Asia’s pioneering professional basketball league.

The Commissioner’s Cup will finish 6 January at the earliest and 13 January if ever the series will go the distance, but Villanueva is hopeful that he would finally win the big one and become No. 1.

Year 2022 was promising, but Villanueva wants to begin the new year as a champion.

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