THE five-year partnership of the San Sebastian Stags and its top patron, Dennis Pineda, is over.
Pineda confirmed to Spin.ph that he has parted ways with the Recoletos squad which, in the years that he had been the biggest backer of the school's basketball program, won one NCAA title and four other championships in other leagues.
“Wala na. Hindi na kami ang sponsor ng Baste, may bago na raw direksyon na tatahakin ang school eh,” said Pineda, former mayor of Lubao town and son of Pampanga Governor Lilia Pineda.
The basketball supporter, however, was quick to emphasize that his split with the San Sebastian organization was amicable.
“Maayos naman paghihiwalay namin. Masaya rin ako kasi aside from an NCAA championship, nabigyan ko sila ng titulo sa PCCL, Fil-Oil Cup, pati sa Palarong Pambansa at PBL nuong araw,” Pineda said.
San Sebastian should feel the effects of the separation as Pineda said he may pull out his wards, among them reigning NCAA MVP Ian Sangalang and Dexter Maiquez, from the Stags next season.
“Hindi na siguro lalaro yung dalawa next season, saka si Michael Miranda. Pati yung mga players ko sa Team B ng San Sebastian baka i-alis ko na rin,” he said.
Sangalang, Marquez and Miranda played alongside former star and now Alaska rookie sensation Calvin Abueva last season and formed the core of the San Sebastian squad that fell short of a finals appearance.
Pineda's pullout of support may also mean that Allan Trinidad, who took over as coach in an interim capacity when Topex Robinson resigned from San Sebastian midway through last season, will no longer be part of the program.
Pineda, who also manages the careers of Sangalang and Abueva, hinted he is in negotiations to shift his support to another NCAA team. Forming a team for the PBA D-League is another option, he added.