ALASKA coach Luigi Trillo said his comments after the Aces' loss to San Mig on Saturday weren't meant to “undermine the public’s confidence in the PBA, but rather to clarify matters pertaining to officiating.”
“This is not about misleading (the public) but I feel I had a fact to present from the (PBA rule book),” Trillo told Spin.ph, after learning that he had been slapped fines totalling P40,000 for his media rant and confrontation with officials after the controversial finish to their 83-84 loss to the Mixers.
The penalty was an off-shoot of a contentious play late on Saturday night when a double-lane violation called by the referees denied Alaska rookie Calvin Abueva a shot at a game-tying free throw in the dying seconds.
Responding to Commissioner Chito Salud's letter saying his statements were meant to "mislead and confuse the public as to the correctness of the call" made by game officials, Trillo said he was merely out to point out what he felt was a technical issue that needed to be looked at by the league.
“So what I’m saying was simply about the one call which is a technical issue and not a personal issue. It’s not about attacking the league or misleading the fans,” he added.
Trillo pointed to a league rule which he said the referees ignored when they called the lane violation: Rule F-7, which states that “No violation can occur if the ball is not released by the free throw shooter except on F-1 (a player exceeds the eight seconds given to shoot a free throw) or F-5 (a player fakes a free throw shot).”
Trillo insisted referee Jess Ferrer erred when he called a double-lane violation, resulting in a jump ball, even with the ball still in the hands of Abueva.
The 37-year-old Alaska mentor also showed Salud a video of the contentious play where San Mig players Mark Barroca and later PJ Simon bumped Abueva before he could take his second free throw - actions which Trillo said are in violation of league rules.
“There is such a thing as a disconcerting (violation), or disrupting a player,” explained Trillo.
At the same time, Trillo denied confronting PBA technical committee head Ramil Cruz outside the Alaska dugout after the game.
“I did not confront him (Cruz). Ramil was walking out and when he heard me talking, he stopped by and walked towards me. Was that confronting? The confrontation never happened,” the Alaska coach said.