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Ex-Kia coach Gavina wants to build winning culture in MPBL team

MANILA, Philippines – Following a difficult stint with the Kia franchise in the PBA, Chris Gavina took on a new challenge almost immediately by accepting a head coaching position in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL).

Gavina, who resigned from his post as Kia head coach late last year, will be coaching the team from Valenzuela. It is another tough task for the young mentor, who was unable to steer the Picanto to success despite his best efforts.

Former Kia coach Chris Gavina. Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News
"The major difference is, you have more established players in the PBA with a greater deal of talent level and skill set," Gavina said on Monday during the official launch of the MPBL.

In Valenzuela, Gavina won't have as many high-profile names as he did in Kia. Instead, he will be coaching – and teaching – homegrown players, some of whom have competed at the collegiate leagues. He names former Colegio de San Juan de Letran stalwarts Ford Ruaya and Jom Sollano as some of his players.

"Since I took over maybe five days ago, I've seen a tremendous spirit in our guys," said Gavina. "It's the way they want to be coached, they want to improve, and they're looking forward to being led by somebody with professional experience."

Author: Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News
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