|In: Jerry Codinera (left), Out: Lawrence Chongson|
Sources close to the situation say that Jerry Codinera was introduced to the UE men's senior basketball team awhile ago, at 1 pm.
Cordinera replaces Lawrence Chongson, who came to within a game of the Season 72 Championship versus Ateneo. Last season, Chongson opened the season 0-4, but got his team to regroup in the second half of the season, finishing the campaign with a 6-8 tally.
A unique aspect of Chongson's system was a lack of concrete plays on the offense. He also had a tendency to start less-talented players, before quickly swapping them out for his veterans.
Chongson signed just a two year contract, over rumors of a Codinera hiring back then, in fact, making this less of a firing and more of a decision not to renew the contract. It was rumored that he would actually be a one and done coach, expressing doubt as to his coaching abilities immediately after their loss to Ateneo in the Championship round but he came back, to a less successful stint.
Expect links to the official announcement soon.
EDITED TO ADD (9:01pm 1/11/11):
PBA Head Statistician Fidel Magonon has confirmed the news on his Twitter site, confirming that Chongson's contract had run out and that UE opted not to renew it. Codinera will have his first game on Saturday, when his Red Warriors face his former teammate Dindo Pumaren's Green Archers in the Fr. Martin's Cup.
The confirmation of the Codinera hiring creates some new questions. For one, who will be on his coaching staff? Will Codinera retain Rene Baena, whose return to the bench in the latter part of Season 73 nearly sparked a Final Four return? Or will he tap another former player who was also getting some head coaching buzz, Allan Caidic?
The second, and perhaps, more important question, is whether or not Paul Lee will be back, as I alluded to in yesterday's Forum Crawl. Lee really blossomed when Chongson cut the superstar guard loose. He is supposedly very loyal to Chongson, and returned only because the notion at the time was to retain Chongson. I can easily see him bolting for the pros, especially if Codinera expects the team to play defense.