PBA commissioner Willie Marcial doesn’t see anything wrong with the way officiating had been handled so far in the ongoing Governors Cup finals between Magnolia and Alaska contrary to the claims raised by coaches of both teams.
Marcial made it clear that reviews made by him and his technical committee on the first three games of the title series would bare that referees were calling the matches consistently.
While officiating may not be perfect, the league commissioner said officiating in the season-ending championship series has so far received a passing grade from him.
“Consistent ang tawagan. Kung ano 'yung tawagan nung Game One, tuluy-tuloy yun,” said Marcial on Monday.
The PBA chief made the statement in light of complaints made by Alaska coach Alex Compton and Magnolia’s Chito Victolero about the way referees had not been drawing the line in terms of what's a foul and what's not.
Compton was the first to raise the issue following the Aces’ 77-71 Game Two loss, zeroing in on feisty Magnolia guards Jio Jalalon and Mark Barroca who he said "were getting away with a lot of calls."
It was Victolero's turn to call out the referees after the Hotshots’ absorbed a 100-71 beating in Game 3, claiming Compton obviously got the attention of the referees as a complete reversal happened.
But Marcial won’t have any of the two coaches’ antics, saying he’s been in the league long enough to know Compton and Victolero are just playing mind games.
“Alam ko naman mind games lahat yan,” he said. “Para sa akin, ang tingin ko maganda ang tawagan.
“Itong series na ito, maganda ang tawagan,” Marcial repeated.
The commissioner even singled out Game Two as the best officiated game out of the three matches so far played in the best-of-seven title series.
No fines will be slapped on both Compton and Victolero, who however, had been issued memos for venting their ire on officiating before mediamen and the public.
“Reminder lang naman yun because they could have talked to me or the technical group (under Eric Castro) to raise any complaints,” said Marcial.
Both teams had been informed about the memos through viber, while a formal note will be given to them by Tuesday morning.
Marcial though, warned both Compton and Victolero that a corresponding fine will be meted on them once they continue criticizing the officiating.
Game 4 is set on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, with Magnolia still leading the series, 2-1.