THE PBA board rued the decision of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to pull out of the 2018 Asian Games basketball competitions.
In a press conference on Friday night before Game One of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals, majority of the PBA board members who attended said they were not informed about the SBP’s decision to pull the plug on the Asiad stint.
The board members said most of them only learned about the SBP decision on social media.
Majority of the members of the PBA board made the statements amidst criticism received by the league after SBP pulled out of the Asian Games, citing its inability to form a competitive team for the quadrennial meet.
“Actually, when we left the board meeting, I knew we will be supporting the Asian Games,” said PBA vice chairman Dickie Bachmann of Alaska. “I just found out about the decision through social media that we backed out. I had no knowledge that we backed out. It was only when Commissioner Willie Marcial told me that we backed out."
San Miguel sports director Alfrancis Chua also called on the netizens not to pin the blame on the league, saying it has been supportive of the national team program.
“Wag naman natin idiin ang PBA. Kung alam niyo lang ang puno't-dulo. Malinaw po ang usapan ni commissioner saka ng SBP na ganito ang gagawin,” said Chua.
Chua said the entire board was already scheduled to book a flight to Jakarta to be able to show its support to the Philippine squad composed mostly of players from Rain or Shine.
“Nag-usap usap na kami. Lahat tayo, pumunta sa Indonesia to support. Pagdating ng 10 o’clock in the evening, tumawag si Gov. Al (Panlilio), sabi hindi na tuloy,” said Chua.
Members of the board also felt slighted that they were not consulted about the decision by SBP to pull put of the Asian Games.
“Sino ang nag-desisyon,” Chua asked. “Marami sa board, sumama ang loob kasi sa social media lang nila nalaman.”
For his part, PBA treasurer Raymund Zorilla said the league has already moved the opening of the next season of the PBA in January of 2019 instead of late 2018 in order to accommodate the Gilas participation in international competition.
“We were all happy. May dates na to go to Indoneisa only to find out this morning lang na back out na pala. Sa amin, please do understand the PBA will always be supporting anything for flag and country. But let’s just put things into proper perspective,” said Zorilla.
Zorilla and Chua said it would have been better if the board was consulted before announcing any decision with regards to the Asian Games.
“We were not consulted. Just like what Gov. Al was saying, basta sa formation ng team kasama kami except for this one na we were not been consulted. Could have just been informed beforehand,” said Zorilla.
“It would have been different na magkakasama kami mag-aannounce. It would have been different. But we borne the grunt of the netizens without us knowing what was happening. Mas maganda kung tayo tayo magsasama,” said Zorilla.
“Ang hinihingi lang naman namin ng kapwa governors, ‘Bukas emergency meeting tayo. Sama sama tayo. Hindi na kami sasali.’ Solid kami,” said Chua.