After five years, LA Tenorio is back in Gilas Pilipinas.
But this time around, the PBA great will wear a different hat, serving as an assistant coach for Tim Cone for the 19th Asian Games.
The 39-year-old Ginebra guard had been sidelined since the start of the year as he needed to undergo chemotherapy.
Now that his cycle is done, Tenorio is ready to get back to work.
“LA just finished his last treatment. He is going back to Singapore on the 18th and the 19th but he will be with us full-time,” said Cone during the SBP-PBA press conference held at the league’s office in Pasig on Thursday.
Tenorio though won’t just be a typical staff member for Gilas.
With the 2023-24 PBA Commissioner’s Cup just a month away, the four-time PBA Finals MVP will also be preparing for his 17th season as well.
“In the meantime, while he is with us, he will continue to work out with us as a player. He wants to become a practice player with the national team to keep himself ready for the upcoming conference,” continued Cone.
“LA has a whole plan. If you know LA, his life is like a big plan. He has something planned all the way. He is excited to work with the players.”
Tenorio is a welcome addition to Gilas, who will only have two weeks to prepare for the continental meet.
He is a one-time World Cupper, played in two Asia Cups, and is a one-time SEA Games gold medalist. Moreover, he was part of the Gilas team that finished seventh in the 2014 games.
“He has that great experience playing in the Asian Games, in the World Cup so he knows the international game well. It’s really a great fit for him and for us to have him. He can talk to the players and share his experience,” Cone remarked about his skipper in Ginebra.
“He is a fighter, he is feisty. Hopefully, he can turn our guards to playing like him.”