Manny Pacquiao Named Head Coach of New Philippine Basketball Team; Filipino Boxer Reportedly Open to the Possibility of Being a Playing Coach

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By Rachelle Corpuz | June 10, 2014 11:56 AM EST

Eight division boxing world champion Manny Pacquiao has reportedly been selected as the head coach of a new Philippine basketball team.

Pacquiao officially revealed his coaching stint during a press conference on June 9, Inquirer Sports reported. Pacquiao is delighted for the opportunity. He said that that he had always loved basketball. The Filipino boxer will be the head coach of one of the three newly-approved Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) team "Kia Motors."

REUTERS
Boxer Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines waves to fans from a ring in the lobby of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada April 8, 2014. Pacquiao will challenge undefeated WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley of the U.S. at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 12. The fight is a rematch to a June 9, 2012 fight that Bradley won. REUTERS/Steve Marcus

I'm very happy to be named head coach of Kia," said Pacquiao. "I really like basketball, even though I have many accomplishments in boxing, basketball is still in my heart," he added.

Even though the Filipino boxer never really played the sport professionally, he is confident that he will be able to impart a little bit of his knowledge and help hone the skills of his basketball players. Pacquiao also remains optimistic that his coaching stint will not interfere with his boxing career as well as his political duties being a congressman himself.

"Just time management and self-discipline, I'll be able to handle that."

On the matter of being a playing coach, Pacquiao said he is not turning down the possibility. However, he said that it is not his top priority at the moment. "As of now, I am head coach. As for playing, we still don't know that. My focus is in coaching, to get good players and or organise a would-be great team," Pacquiao uttered.

The speculations about Pacquiao coaching a basketball team made headlines in May. Now that it is official, Pacquiao will be embarking on his incursions on the hard court when the PBA 2014-2015 season kicks off on Oct. 19. Pacquiao's schedule is not an easy ride. He works as a congressman and he is slated to have at least two fights every year. His coaching duties for the PBA just adds to his already frenzied calendar.

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(Photo: REUTERS / Steve Marcus)
Boxer Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines waves to fans from a ring in the lobby of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada April 8, 2014. Pacquiao will challenge undefeated WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley of the U.S. at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 12. The fight is a rematch to a June 9, 2012 fight that Bradley won. REUTERS/Steve Marcus
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