IT’S a potential clash between minor league squad and mother club as NLEX hopes to keep its star player from suiting up for his alma mater and playing against the Road Warriors in the PBA D-League.
Fruitas has forged a tie-up with Far Eastern University for the next conference, a move that paves the way for the Shakers to beef up their lineup with the core of the Tamaraws including NLEX player RR Garcia. Under a school tie-up, a D-League team is allowed to obtain players—local and foreign—from the college team.
But coach Boyet Fernandez believes it will be unfair for management if their starting guard Garcia or any NLEX player is released to another D-League team only to play against the Warriors.
“Parang imposible ’yun because they are committed to us. If they (college team) want to get the players, they will get the players but they will not play against NLEX or probably in the D-League. Unfair sa amin and sa management,” said Fernandez.
The Road Warriors mentor said management is willing to give back its players to their respective schools that are preparing for the upcoming collegiate season, on the condition the school team will not play in the developmental league next conference.
“Ang sa akin, I hope schools will understand, we will allow their players to go back to their schools pero hindi naman siguro puwede na maglaro sila sa D-League at kalabanin kami,” Fernandez said.
Fruitas earlier said it is planning to ask permission from NLEX to release Garcia so that he can play for the Tamaraws-backed Shakers.
Nevertheless, the NLEX mentor who recently led the Road Warriors to their fourth straight title said that it will be a management decision and will keep an open mind in the matter.
“Pag-iisipan. Probably, we will enjoy the next few days first,” Fernandez said.