INSTEAD of letting Gilas Pilipinas play as guest team in the Governors Cup, PBA commissioner Chito Salud said the board is looking at compressing the tournament schedule to allow the national squad to participate in this year’s Fiba Asia Cup in Wuhan, China.
“We’re continually looking to explore ways of further compressing our third conference with the end in view of allowing our Gilas team to participate in the Fiba Asia Cup,” Salud told sports scribes after emerging from the monthly PBA board meeting at the league’s office in Libis, Quezon City.
The Fiba Asia Cup, formerly known as the ABC Champions Cup, will be held on July 11-19, with the winner qualifying automatically for the Fiba Asia men’s championships next year.
Salud explained that the compressed schedule could possibly mean having five PBA game days a week in the season-ending conference, which is expected to end by July 9.
However, the decision is still subject for review for the time being, since they are still going to consider the playing venue’s availability as well as a consultation with broadcast partner TV5.
“So what we will do is play 10 games a week. Whether that’s a triple-header, twice a week or a double-header five times a week, that’s what we’re fixing right now,” said the PBA chief
“I hope we could be accommodated by TV5 so that the games can be shown live for the fans to enjoy.”
Salud also mentioned that the nitty gritty of the compressed schedule is expected to be finalized by April 10 when the league board holds a special meeting at the PBA office.
In the same meeting, Salud said he will also be making a detailed presentation to the board on the credentials of the three expansion team applicants - Ever Bilena, owned by sportsman-businessman Dioceldy Sy, Kia Motors and NLEX/Metro Pacific under the MVP (Manny V. Pangilinan) group.
I’ve gotten all the information I deem necessary for me to present their credentials to the board. So on April 10, a special board meeting will be called, precisely for the purpose of considering the applications of these three teams,” he added.