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Pingris unretires, joins Nueva Ecija in MPBL

Marc Pingris is not yet ready to fully close his doors on his basketball career.

Nueva Ecija has announced that it has signed the nine-time PBA champion for the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Invitational Cup.

The tournament takes place from December 11-23, 2021.

Rice Vanguards head coach Charles Tiu confirmed the development to Tiebreaker Times.

“It’s an honor to have him on our team,” said Tiu. “We are all very excited to have Pingris on board with us.

“One of the greats In Philippine basketball. We’ve been planning this for a while.”

Back on May 25, the 40-year-old Pingris decided to call it a career after 17 years in the PBA.Gilas-Practice-Pingris Pingris unretires, joins Nueva Ecija in MPBL Basketball MPBL News  - philippine sports news

“I remember my name being called during the 2004 PBA Draft. Doon nagsimulang matupad ang pangarap ng isang batang palengke,” recalled Pingris, the third overall pick in the 2004 PBA Draft.

“Sixteen years na din ako sa PBA pero alam ko na ngayon na din ang tamamg panahon para umpisahan ang bagong chapter ng buhay ko.”

And that new chapter will be written in the country’s soon-to-be professional regional league.

The Rice Vanguards, which is owned by Palayan City Mayor Rianne Cuevas, are looking to build a stacked team after losing the likes of Mikey Williams, the Gomez de Liaño brothers, and Gab Banal during the extended off-season.

“He’s going to be the leader of our team.

“He still looks pretty good and is as competitive as ever,” said Tiu as Pingris attended his first practice on Wednesday morning. “I think he will help us on the floor and also off it with his voice.”

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