PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa defended his swift decision to ban Ivan Johnson for life from the pro league, saying he was only after maintaining order inside the court.
Narvasa has come under fire after it took him less than a quarter to decide to slap the punishment on the Tropang TNT import, who cursed the commissioner after getting ejected late in the second quarter of their Commissioner’s Cup game against Meralco on Saturday.
Amid a strong outcry over the lack of due process leading to the ban, Narvasa met with Johnson at the PBA office on Tuesday then explained his strong and hasty action.
“Problem was, I was the one involved and I’m the one who has to do the decision-making,” Narvasa began to explain on Tuesday after a meeting with Johnson.
“This one has been expressed previously: I do not get involved in the game, so you don’t have to address,” he added. “When this happened, I was also surprised.
"They have to understand the playing court is a place of work, not a playground where there are no rules. "
Narvasa, a former coach, said he also wanted to protect the sanctity of the position he currently holds.
“If I were a coach, I’d understand, but then I realized I’m the commissioner, so I hope the fans will understand that I just want to make sure that there is order inside the court,” Narvasa said.
“Just as intense as the players can be like Ivan, I’m also just as intense in protecting everybody there in following the rules, so I hope they understand,” he added.