BORACAY Rum put under protest its 85-87 loss to Blackwater Sports on Monday, expecting to intensify the silent feud between the two teams that got involved in a tug-of-war for the services of Fil-Italian guard Chris Banchero during the off-season.
Citing what they deemed was a `human error’ on the part of game officials, the Waves through coach Lawrence Chongson, said they already submitted the protest letter Tuesday at the PBA Commissioner’s Office and paid a P20,000 bond.
“Alam naman namin na wala itong patutunguhan, pero gagawin namin ito out of prinsipyo,” said the outspoken Boracay Rum coach.
The coach with the distinctive mop-top hairdo pointed to a three-pointer made by Banchero to start the fourth quarter, which was counted by game officials as a mere two-pointer.
“Sumenyas `yung referee ng tres eh. Bakit dos lang ang ibinigay?” asked Chongson, insisting that if the score was tallied correctly, the game could have gone either way.
“Last second ng game, tatlo lang lamang nila. Na foul sa tres si Mark Belo, mintis niya`yung isang free throw, lamang pa rin ng isa Blackwater. Dapat tabla na yun,” he said.
“Iba sana naging outcome ng laro.”
But Blackwater team owner Dioceldo Sy was quick to criticize Chongson for the move, calling the protest illogical.
“Mag-po-protesta sila? If we won by one point, maybe the protest is worth looking at,” Sy said.
“Kaso we won by two points eh. Add mo sila ng one point, talo pa rin sila. Common sense lang di ba?” added the Ever Bilena franchise owner.
Boracay and Blackwater had a well-publicized row for the D-League playing rights of Banchero, whom Sy already signed to a contract as early as February.
But the implementation of a first ever rookie draft forced Banchero to go thru the system, which Blackwater tried to appeal but to no avail.
Boracay went to tap Banchero with the league’s No. 1 overall pick, although the former San Miguel Beer guard in the Asian Basketball League remains as one of Blackwater’s top endorsers.
D-League officials refused to give comment on the protest matter.
The loss was a heartbreaker for Boracay Rum, which lead almost the entire game as it sought the early lead of the season-opening conference.