HE’S been away from the game of basketball for a long while that incoming PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa considers his appointment both as an ‘opportunity’ and a ‘challenge.’
Narvasa admitted games in Asia’s first ever play-for-pay league have been a whole lot different from the time he was still coaching a talented Purefoods and Shell ballclubs during the 90s.
“I think the games are a bit more physical that is why I want to be able to study it again, see what the guidelines are, and then hear from the coaches, players, and even governors on what they think they want to improve,” Narvasa told Spin.ph moments after being officially named as the man to succeed Chito Salud as league commissioner on Thursday.
Salud is set to step down from his post by the end of the current season to take on the new position as the league's first president and CEO.
Narvasa has been away from basketball since he last coached Shell in 1998, opting to focus on his career as a practicing lawyer while also serving as chief executive officer of Citystate Bank.
However, he did admit watching the PBA Finals regularly on television, including the recent Commissioner’s Cup best-of-seven title series won by Talk ‘N Text over Rain or Shine.
Narvasa tries to warm up for his new position by Monday as he intends to watch the games of the Governors Cup personally when action shifts to the Ynares Center in Antipolo on Monday.
The son of the late former Chief Justice Andres Narvasa also expressed his gratitude to the entire league board and team owners for the trust they’ve given him.
Narvasa emerged a unanimous consensus for the job after getting a 12-0 vote from members of the board when it convened on Thursday at the PBA office in Libis.
“I am very excited and also very grateful to the PBA board and all the team owners for the opportunity given to me,” he said.
At the same time, Narvasa said he intends to call a meeting with the rest of the officers of the Basketball Coaches Association of the Philippines (BCAP) of which he is president.
“I don’t want this (BCAP position) to have conflict (with his new post as commissioner), that is why I’ll be calling a meeting within one week,” he added.
Meanwhile, Salud considers the appointment of Narvasa a ‘resounding success.’
“Chito brings tremendous experience, maturity and know-how in managing the growing operational and technical challenges of a vibrant and dynamic league,” Salud said.
“I will undoubtedly rely on him in ensuring that our product, our games continue to be a source of pride and the driver of our ambition to take the PBA to the next level in terms of the breadth and scope of its partnerships, reach, impact, and innovative capacity.”