CHICAGO - By most accounts, Greg Slaughter is a gentle soul who doesn't resort to aggression to govern his fears or insecurities.
But with his playing career in limbo, the 7-foot steam roller wielded a hint of anger and frustration as he plowed through social media to lament the fact that his contract talks with NorthPort have "ceased."
Instead of quietly putting a lid on what clearly was the genesis of a dumpster fire, NorthPort team manager Bonnie Tan elected to gaslight the issue by refuting Greg's claims.
I'm not saying Tan shouldn't have. After all, he possesses the same right of expression and free speech as Greg, but prudence dictates that Tan should have handled this matter privately, and be the adult in the room, so to speak.
Look, the Batang Pier owns Greg's rights, they hold all the cards. There was absolutely no need to flex.
I endeavoured to interview both sides for this column with no success.
As always, Greg proved to be more elusive than Big Foot while Tan left my calls and messages on Viber unanswered.
Here's the deal. If Tan really wanted to sign Slaughter to a contract extension, he could have simply picked up the phone. Sending an email and delegating a parcel service is lazy, convenient.
IF THERE'S A WILL THERE'S A WAY.
I understand team managers can be so busy. I know, I talk to several of those executives in the PBA. But NorthPort was eliminated from the Governor's Cup last March 13. That was 51 days ago.
Outside of his responsibilities in a concurrent role as Letran coach, how crowded can Tan's calendar possibly be?
In contrast, TNT head coach Chot Reyes traveled to the US a few weeks ago reportedly for a talent scouting trip and went out of his way to meet up with Mikey Williams, the Tropang Giga star player who is angling for a higher salary via a renegotiated deal.
Tan is in the same country as Greg. Heck, both probably live in the same opulent, gated community and he can't facilitate a meeting?
Come on, man.
If the Batang Pier no longer want the services of Greg, they should trade him or release his rights. The man, who has a family to feed, needs his livelihood.
If NorthPort can't extend Greg the courtesy of a face-to-face meeting, can it at least show some decency and allow him to earn a living elsewhere?
B.LEAGUE OPTION FOR GREG?
I asked my Japan-based agent contact if there is a market for Greg in the B.League and the response was unequivocal.
Meanwhile, Kume Marcial needs to pick up the phone and counsel both Slaughter and Tan to refrain from washing their dirty laundry in public.
Fresh from a dazzling Governor's Cup finals that reinvigorated a pandemic-fatigued fan base, the PBA is shooting itself in the foot and quickly losing some of the giant strides it made in the previous conference.
Through pixels in their smartphones, kids these days describe this melodrama in three letters.
Shaking My Head.
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