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Chot back as Tropang Giga coach

Tropang Giga Chot Reyes (second from left) returns to coach the TNT Tropang Giga while welcoming him back are team governor Ricky Vargas (left), telecom tycoon Manny V. Pangilinan (middle) and team managers Jojo Lastimosa and Yvette Ruiz. | Photograph COURTESY OF TNT

Chot Reyes is set to resume his old role as head coach while Jojo Lastimosa will return as team manager following TNT Tropang Giga’s early exit in the quarterfinals of the Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup.

Lastimosa broke the development to DAILY TRIBUNE, saying that Reyes is already negotiating a new contract with the Tropang Giga to make sure that there will be continuity in their program.

Reyes will start calling the shots in the Philippine Cup set in March.

“He’s already working on his extension beyond 2025. He will sign his contract extension any time now,” said Lastimosa, referring to Reyes, whose contract with the Tropang Giga will expire in 2025.

Reyes is regarded as the winningest mentor in the history of the TNT franchise.

In fact, he is responsible for breaking the 10-conference dominance of San Miguel Corporation-owned teams by leading the Tropang Giga to the Philippine Cup title in 2021.

Aside from coaching TNT, Reyes also worked on Gilas Pilipinas, which he guided all the way to the FIBA Basketball World Cup last year while reclaiming the gold medal in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games in Cambodia last year.

With Reyes calling the shots for Gilas, the TNT management tapped Lastimosa to serve as concurrent head coach and team manager.

Under Lastimosa, the Tropang Giga won the Governors’ Cup title last year until running into a series of unfortunate incidents that hurt their campaign in the ongoing Commissioner’s Cup.

Injuries and sickness took a toll on the Tropang Giga with Jayson Castro and import Rondae Hollis-Jefferson joining Roger Pogoy, Poy Erram and Justin Chua in the sidelines late in the elimination round.

Castro suffered a meniscus injury while Hollis-Jefferson crashed with a bad fall that led to a neck injury during their East Asia Super League game late last year.

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