Guiao parted ways yesterday with a Rain or Shine team he steered to two championships in the PBA, and accepted the offer of NLEX to be its head coach in the next season.
In taking a new post in one of the three franchises owned by the MVP group, the former Pampanga congressman said the coaching stint was not the main consideration.
“It was beyond basketball,” said Guiao when asked of his consideration for accepting the NLEX offer.
According to Guiao, NLEX has given him full control in the CSR (corporate social responsibility) project which would benefit his constituents in Pampanga since the company controls the operation of the SCTEX and NLEX.
Guiao steered the Elasto Painters to their first and only title so far with victory in the 2012 Governors’ Cup. The Painters had been consistent in the playoffs since then, and even managed to snatch one more title -- the last Commissioner’s Cup which they won at the expense of Alaska.
The Painters though failed to make the semis in the season-ending Governors’ Cup.
Guiao said the NLEX offer was hard to refuse as the move would also allow him to lead projects in his hometown.
Rain or Shine owner Raymond Yu admitted that it was indeed very tough to match NLEX’s offer.
“Of course, we tried our best to keep him, but we felt that the offer of NLEX is too attractive to pass up,” Yu said.
Guiao left Rain or Shine in good terms, according to Yu.
“Yes, it’s true, the deal has just been finalized this morning, although we were constantly communicating about the offer. Coach Yeng was a true gentleman in terms of handling the situation and he didn’t hide it from me,” Yu said.
Guiao said he won’t bring to NLEX any member of his coaching staff in Rain or Shine.
“When I moved to Rain or Shine, wala naman talaga akong bitbit sa coaching staff bukod kay Coach Rhoel (Nadurata) na namayapa na, so I guess I will be going there on my own,” Guiao said.
“I was also asked if I have people in mind, but puwede rin naman, but I told them it’s up to them. Puwede rin naman kung sino na yung dadatnan.”
Guiao replaced Boyet Fernandez at the NLEX helm, with Guiao’s assistant Caloy Garcia elevated as Rain or Shine’s new head coach.
Meanwhile, former PBA MVPs Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand are the only remaining members of the last Barangay Ginebra team that won the championship in the 2008 Fiesta Conference.
“The Last of The Mohicans,” as Helterbrand described it. But now the two have another chance to add another notch to their long, decorated careers after Ginebra booked a return trip to the PBA Finals -- its first in three years.
Caguioa and Helterbrand, collectively known as ‘The Fast and The Furious’, just could not be happier to have another shot at the crown.